Making a lifestream useful

A few months ago I slated Jeremy’s lifestream, because it’s a single point-per-person summary of activity – and in particular my own activity which I already know all about.

So, having spoken to Jeremy briefly at XTech, and assuming that I don’t have a proper digital lifestyle (or digital connections) aggreator, what can we do to make the lifestream interesting?

First of all we can start archiving your activities. A monthly archive as an Atom file will do to start with. You can then plug that in to any other Atom-supporting tool to get some visualisations of your data such as getting a timeline by plugging it into Simile Timeline using My Timelines.

Secondly we can index this for searching using Lucene or one of the many langauge ports like PyLucene or Ferret for Ruby so that you can search for items across time in a single location.

Thirdly we can provide a simple bit of PHP which glues files together from a set time period so we can get back an Atom file for a group of particular months or years.

Finally we can use the stored lifestream as an index for a scraper which can provide a local version of the full content of your activities. For example some people worry that Flickr has all their data – well, use this to monitor your Flickr and blog postings and pull them down and store them locally (or back them up to another location).

I might see if I can hack on some of this this week.

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