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This Is What 350,000 Websites Look Like

Illustration for article titled This Is What 350,000 Websites Look Like

Try to picture the internet and you invariably have a hard time. Fortunately, Ruslan Enikeev has decided to help you out by creating a map which organizes websites by popularity and similarity.


The result is The Internet Map. In total, the whole map depicts 350,000 sites and two million links from 196 countries. Each site is represented by a circle, whose size depends on the amount of traffic, and the space between each one is determined by the frequency with which users jump from one to another. Enikeev explains:

As one might have expected, the largest clusters are formed by national websites, i.e. sites belonging to one country. For the sake of convenience, all websites relative to a certain country carry the same color. For instance, the red zone at the top corresponds to Russian segment of the net, the yellow one on the left stands for the Chinese segment, the purple one on the right is Japanese, the large light-blue central one is the American segment, etc.

Importantly, clusters on the map are semantically charged, i.e. they join websites together according to their content. For example, a vast porno cluster can be seen between Brazil and Japan as well as a host of minor clusters uniting websites of the same field or similar purposes.


It's anybody's guess as to why porn's logical home is sandwiched between Brazil and Japan—but maybe that's one to leave for the comments. The map's a fairly effective time drain, as you might expect, as it's great fun to explore and see where your favorite websites appear.

We, of course, couldn't resist taking a peek at where Giz appeared in the grand scheme of things: not far from from Twitter, in a little Gawker cluster all of our own. Home sweet home. [The Internet Map via Flowing Data]

Illustration for article titled This Is What 350,000 Websites Look Like

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xkcd has actually done this three times, twice visualized as a map focused on "online communities", and once using IP addresses visualized as a grid for easier relative comparison.

Maps of Communities:

Field of IP:

EDIT: Not to imply that this isn't really cool, or that it's derivative. It is cool and a great implementation. Just sharing some fun old relics from years ago, for anyone who may not have seen them.