I just checked out VeryRelated.com’s mind map for the word ‘fascinating’, and the results are pretty interesting. Maybe I’d go as far to say that they verge on being, well, fascinating!
VeryRelated draws upon data from Yahoo’s snapshot of the world wide web (its index used for web search). It automatically constructs mind maps from this data, showing related words and concepts. Bubbles are closer together if the words are more highly related (that is, more likely to occur on the same webpage), and they’re bigger if the words are more popular on the Internet.
When I go to VeryRelated.com and type in “fascinating”, I get the mind map shown below:
Click on a magnifying glass on the left, and you’ll bring up a Google search for fascinating + the related word. Interestingly enough, the most highly related word is “books”.
I browsed through the Google search results for “fascinating books”, and discovered a couple of real gems which I might even buy!
One is See Food by Guundie Kuchling. The book description is as follows:
See Food! By Guundie Kuchling One moment one meal in the chain of life. Do you love the sea? Have you ever wondered what sea creatures like to eat? Inside this book you will see food like you have never seen before. Follow the food chain from the tiniest ciliate (see-lee-at) to the very end. Can you guess who is last in line? There are many possible food chains in the sea this is one of them. This is a great educational book about sea animals that eventually become seafood. With its clever illustrations it makes it easy for kids to understand the sea food chain. It also includes Did you know? section at the end of the book which will provide useful information for any kid wishing to know more. Hard Cover. Ages 2 – 8
I did another search on Guundie Kuchling and found her amazing website where she talks about her many children’s books.
Children just love Guundie’s vibrant, funny and informative picture books. Those lucky enough to come to her workshops, also love her appearance. Mad hats, two wildly different earrings, scarf flying, surrounded by hand puppets, turtle shells and a shaved doll, Guundie enchants her audience by talking about art, animals, books, the environment, food, and other sources for her inspirations. She gives examples how to come up with ideas and to shape them into plots; she demonstrates how to use a lino block for print making; she unleashes the writer and artist in each of the students, young and old, and gets them creating works of their own.
I have found VeryRelated.com often helps me to discover amazing things in not-so-frequently traveled parts of the Internet, such as Guundie Kuchling’s great website about her art and books.
From the book description at Harper Collins:
It would never have happened if not for Saddam Hussein. When U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Madeleine Albright criticized the dictator, his poet in residence responded by calling her “an unparalleled serpent.” Shortly thereafter, while preparing to meet with Iraqi officials, Albright pondered: What to wear? She decided to make a diplomatic statement by choosing a snake pin. Although her method of communication was new, her message was as old as the American Revolution—Don’t Tread on Me.
From that day forward, pins became part of Albright’s diplomatic signature. International leaders were pleased to see her with a shimmering sun on her jacket or a cheerful ladybug; less so with a crab or a menacing wasp. Albright used pins to emphasize the importance of a negotiation, signify high hopes, protest the absence of progress, and show pride in representing America, among other purposes.
Part illustrated memoir, part social history, Read My Pins provides an intimate look at Albright’s life through the brooches she wore.
Find out more, and buy Read My Pins at Amazon.com:
Read My Pins: Stories from a Diplomat’s Jewel Box
So that’s it for today. Hope you found this post interesting. Check back soon for more discussions about mind maps and discoveries on the ‘net. In the meantime, feel free to explore VeryRelated.com and the mind maps on any topic you wish.
In this VeryRelated.com mind map discussion we talk about a four letter word referring to one of the most basic human needs, nothing other than love itself. Love expresses sentiment, a strong positive sentiment. But what else can we learn about love?
According to the VeryRelated mind map about Love (generated based on analyzing how words are semantically related on the Internet), the following words are most associated with the word Love on web pages (in order of relevance):
Have, Know, With, Go, Great, There, Life, Music, Would, Which, It, May, Look, Song, Him, To Be, Keep, A Little, Heart, Thanks, Death, Hope, God, True, Special, Children, Woman, So Much, Movie, Thank You, Eyes, Mother, Week, Love It, Father, Sex
The VeryRelated algorithm (discussed here) identifies words which are likely to occur together on web pages. It doesn’t have a conscious “intelligence” to actually know what the words mean, but it does reveal a lot about the words’ meanings by showing which words are their “friends”.
There is a saying that you can tell a lot about a person by knowing who their friends are. Of course, by definition friends are people who you are close with or related to in some way, whether it be through physical proximity or in a virtual way through Internet.
(As an aside, the social network Facebook expands the definition of “friend” to include loose connections, such as someone you may have met once and want to stay in touch with or follow their updates in the anticipation of interacting with them in the future).
Words identified by VeryRelated on the mind map of the word Love are like the friends or close relations of Love. Let’s discuss some of the words and ponder why they are related.
“Have” is a very common word on the Internet, but surprisingly the word Love is even more common. (In the Very Related mind map graph, the word Love is in a larger bubble than Have). This indicates how important Love is to English speakers.
“Have” is also the most strongly related word to Love. This suggests that love may imply (or be associated with) the concept of possession. A wedding vow that is traditionally spoken includes the words “To have and to hold”. To love someone and for them to love you back in return means that you “have” each other’s love.
In some countries today or in some times throughout history, possession in love takes an even more extreme form: marriage or guardianship may imply legal ownership, such as a man “owning” his wife or child as a form of property.
In a non-personal sense, we are often expressing love or positive sentiment for things that we own or wish to own. For example, consider the sentence, “I love that car; I want to have one.”
“Know”, the second word on the VeryRelated.com love mind map, is also no surprise. Wasn’t it the character Linus on the Peanuts cartoon strip who said, “To know me is to love me”? (I had a cartoon pillow case as a child with that quote.) To love something or someone deeply, you have to know the object of interest well. Perhaps lust is love without knowledge of the object of desire.
I won’t discuss all the words in depth, but the following are also interesting to think about in relation to love: Life, Music, Death, Hope, God, Movie, Eyes, Mother, Father, Sex.
It seems strange how Movie is more related to love than Mother or Father. Maybe this is the result of how web page content might be skewed towards commercial promotion rather than personal declarations of love – such as more web pages saying “you will love this movie” rather than “I love my mother”.
Life and death, music, eyes, hope, and God: these are all hugely important words with significant meaning to the human experience that we all share.
Here’s hoping that you experience many kinds of love in your life. Until next time, be sure to explore some of the free mind maps on VeryRelated.com.
In the VeryRelated.com Mind Map about Empowerment, we learn that empowerment is strongly related with the following key ideas:
Education, Being, Participation, Good, Why, Poverty, Involvement, Real, Choice, Collaboration, Democratic, Healing, Equality, Seeks, The Third, Managers.
Wikipedia gives the definition of empowerment as the following:
Empowerment refers to increasing the spiritual, political, social or economic strength of individuals and communities. It often involves the empowered developing confidence in their own capacities.
It makes sense that Education is the most highly related concept to Empowerment because an individual or community gains strength through increased knowledge. The saying “knowledge is power” definitely has some truth. Participation in one’s community is a great way for individuals to empower themselves and their community. This involvement leads to good outcomes for everyone involved.