We’re excited about the new year so for the month of January we’re posting a series of all manner of things that motivate and inspire us.

The Opte Project

Today's entry comes from Dave and presents how engaging data can become. Born in response to similar projects mapping the Internet, The Opte Project started from a place of contention. Barrett Lyon commented to colleagues that he could map the Internet and visualize it daily, in stark contrast to other projects where such work took months. Moreover, he vowed to keep his project open.

This sort of rich data visualization helps to present the volume of activity happening around the world, whether it's this (NASA's view of lights at night from space) or this (Facebook's activity as of 12/2010). There's a lot of data out in the world and it takes a lot to put it into a presentable form. Projects like Opte make that just a little bit easier, both to replicate and to comprehend.