How Does the Internet See You?


This is fun, creepy, illuminating, and scary. Sort of like rubbernecking at your own wreck.

It’s Personas, a component of the Metropath(ologies) exhibit on display at the MIT Museum by the Sociable Media Group from the MIT Media Lab.

Personas shows you how the Internet sees you. Enter your name and this devlishly clever web crawler scours for information and attempts to characterize you… to fit you into a predetermined set of categories created by an algorithmic process from a massive corpus of data. The process is presented visually in a cool and dynamic way.

Check it out. You get to be reduced to a pretty barcode.

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  • Julia Whitty is the environmental correspondent for Mother Jones. Her latest book is Deep Blue Home: An Intimate Ecology of Our Wild Ocean. For more of her stories, click here.