At The Guardian's recent History Hack Day, software engineer Gareth Lloyd and developer Tom Martin combed Wikipedia for articles about significant happenings in human history and created an animated mapping of these events unfolding across the globe as if they were blips on a radar.
Searching Wikipedia articles by year between 499 B.C. and 2011 A.D., the pair nabbed 14,238 posts about historical events and plotted them on a map of the world. The finished product, called "A History Of The World In 100 Seconds," animates the entire timeline at super-speed. As the years fly by and the plotted events become more and more numerous, an outline of the world's continents becomes apparent.
But the dataset Lloyd and Martin used was far from complete. Lloyd writes in his blog that their massive Wikipedia search turned up more than "424,000 articles with coordinates and 35,000 references to events." Only articles that could be matched with geotagged data were included in their visualization. Furthermore, Geekosystem notes, "The history is pretty Eurocentric, with an added dose of North America-centrism come 1700 or so." Gizmodo adds, "According to the internet, it took about 1100 years for anything interesting to happen outside of Europe."
Nevertheless, Lloyd and Martin took home History Hackday's prize for "Best Visualization" for their animation. Check out their prize-winning map of WIkipedia history (below).
WATCH:[ via Gizmodo]