Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Reaction- Tag Clouds and the Case for Vernacular Visualization

The paper starts with the history and evolution of tag clouds but what was really interesting to find was that the concept of tag cloud started very early around 1976. It was simply unbelievable for me. I always thought of it being fairly new. Anyway I never got to read about them in detail but this paper allowed me to do so.

I agree with the point that tag clouds are not restricted to just websites anymore and have application in a number a varied domains. It is one of the effective tools used for text analysis. It was good to see so many different types of example tag clouds used in different contexts.

I think that it will be too cluttered as the size of the cloud grows and hence it might lose its benefits of finding useful information when all the words are of different sizes. I don't understand the relevance in that case as some important but just slightly smaller words might not get noticed at all. I totally agree with the argument about alphabetical ordering versus clustering. It is really difficult to pick one over the other as both have their own advantages.

Overall it was a simple, short, well compiled paper really easy to read and understand. They have done a good job in including so much information in such a short paper along with figures and examples, history and evolution thereby providing a good understanding for Tag Clouds.