generate code_swarm data from Wikipedia page histories & user contributions
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wikipedia.rb weights Nov 19, 2008



Generates code_swarm event logs from the Wikipedia API.

Written to visualize edits to the Barack Obama page:


Get the code_swarm Processing app installed and working:

Generate an activity.xml using wikipedia.rb -- can accept multiple args:

$ ruby wikipedia.rb "Barack Obama" > activity.xml

It will also generate a merged log from multiple arguments:

$ ruby wikipedia.rb "Barack Obama" "John McCain" "Ron Paul" > activity.xml

And can produce a log of a users' contributions, which fits the few-authors-many-files paradigm better:

$ ruby wikipdia.rb "User:Jamiew" > activity.xml


The code_swarm.wikipedia.config file is the config I used to generate the Obama video. It has edges turned on (which turns the histogram off) and lower TTL for authors.

In a code_swarm install you can do something like:

$ ruby wikiswarm/wikipedia.rb "Barack Obama" > data/activity.xml
$ ./ wikiswarm/code_swarm.wikipedia.config

See the code_swarm docs for how to save frames and use ffmpeg to generate a video. Then add rap music and enjoy!

Written by Jamie Wilkinson
Nov. 6th 2008