More hot stuff

I’ve just added another widget to the blog:


…it shows the new words and hot topics that have appeared in library/librarian weblogs during the last 48 hours, using the data from the tag cloud I knocked together last month.

At the moment, the new Apple iPhone is the hottest topic out there.

If you want to include the widget in your own blog, then it’s similar to the L2 Idea one:

<script type="text/javascript"

The raw output looks like this, so hopefully you can style it to fit the design of your own blog:

Alternatively, I’ve been dumping data to  If you want data from today (10 Jan 2007), then you’ll find it here:

…i.e. the format is /data/libraryblogs/<year>/<month>/<day>/

You’ll find the following files in the directory:

1) cloud.html — a copy of the last word cloud for that day

2) top100.txt — the top 100 words along with their frequency weighting in the format word,freq (this data is used to generate the cloud)

3) hotwords.txt — the latest hot topics, along with the frequency weighting and a URL to the relevant blog posts (these are the green words in the cloud)

It’s that last file which gets used for the above widget.  Also, I’ve only just started generating the “hotwords.txt” file today, so it’s not available in the previous directories.

The files for the current day get updated approximately every 15 minutes, so the widget should be really up-to-date.

One last note is that the server is based in the UK, so its idea of what “today” is might be different to yours!

[ update – 11/Jan/2007 ]

If anyone is already using the widget, I’ve tweaked the script to run under mod_perl (which is faster than cgi) and the new URL is:

<script type="text/javascript"

(the old URL will continue to work just fine tho!)

I’ve also tweaked it to accept a selection of parameters which can be appended to the “src” URL in the usual way – e.g.

<script type="text/javascript"

max — the maximum number of words to show in the cloud (default is now 10)

target — can be set to none to stop the words being a link, or can be set to technorati, liszen, or libworm to initiate a search for the word on that web site (default is to display my list of posts from the last 48 hours containing the word)

window — can be set to same or new and determines if the same window is used for the link, or if a new window should be opened (default is new)

scale — set to a positive number (e.g. 0.5 or 2) and affects the font size scaling applied to the words in the cloud (default is 1), or can be set to 0 to disable scaling (in which case, you’ll want to set plus to a sensible value)

plus — set to an integer number (e.g. 30 or -5) which is added to the font size after the scale has been applied (default is 20) — if you’ve set scale to 0 and want the text to appear the same size as the rest of your web page, then set plus to 100 (to give a font size of “100%”)

bold — set to an integer number to determine the font size boundary between normal text and bold text, or set to 0 to stop any words appearing in bold text

If you use the widget, you’re under no obligation to provide a link back to my blog… but it’d be cool if you could reply to this blog post!

  1. I saw this when I looked at your previous post.I made a nice comment which used the phrase “green goop” in it, but I think it was lost in the ether…

    Anyhow…very useful widget if you want to avoid Rochelle’s “echo-chamber” where we all re-quote each other nicely without adding ideas or spice. Although I do notice that “politeness” is one of the top topics at the moment…sparked by her Politeness? Overrated. post.

  2. Since I upgraded to WordPress 2.05, it’s been really hard to sort through comments that Akismet has marked as spam — sorry if yours slipped through the net 😦

    By the way, if anyone would like any tweaks or options adding to the widget, just let me know!

  3. Hi I just came across a reference to your widget on an Australian libraries blog and had a go at using it on my blog. Hope this is OK – it looks really interesting and I’m looking forward to seeing what comes up.
    Thank you! Sarah

  4. Hi Sarah — it’s definitely OK! At the moment, the LibraryLaw Blog post about RFID is dominating the cloud as it contains lots of infrequently used words.

  5. Thanks – it’s really interesting as checking the tags is pointing me towards subjects I may not otherwise come across. I keep thinking, that’s a strange term – wonder what that’s all about… click! Brilliant idea!

  6. The Liszen search URL must have changed recently, so I’ve updated it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: