Monday, July 30, 2007

You got a timeline on that?

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Have you ever wondered whether there is a better way to represent information than Wikipedia? The founders of xtimeline probably did too. That's why Lauren and Kevin created something that's, in their own words, "a cross between Wikipedia and YouTube".

A graphical representation of chronological data is much more interesting (and easy on the brain) than the usual figures and play with words. If you have information that you would like to share with the world, why not make a timeline of it? It's much easier to create and the information is spread easily too. If you have Picasa installed on your computer, you'll be able to relate to the timeline format in which your pictures are displayed. It's also similar to the way Apple's Leopard displays your images and videos. A good idea indeed.

With xtimelines, users can create timelines on almost anything of their interest. What makes it collaborative is that other users can comment on and rate the timelines. You can even 'bulk upload' timelines in the .CSV format if connectivity costs you dearly or if you'd rather create things on your computer first.

What's even better, some of the top timelines appear in the 'featured' section of xtimelines. Ones of particular interest are the timelines of Google, The Iraq war and The Lord of the Rings.

So next time you have to make a school/college or job presentation about data, consider creating a timeline - it's easy to share and more effective than charts.

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