Tuesday, January 24th, 2006

New feature: Fun statistics

As some of you have noticed, I’ve added a “Fun statistics” link on every profile page. Here’s mine. It presents statistics like:Link

  • Library obscurity (the average number of copies of the books held by others)
  • Total tags; tagged books; tags per book
  • Cataloging sources
  • A histogram of ratings
  • A histogram of publication dates

There’s a lot more I’d like to do. Right now these numbers aren’t contextualized. Is my “library obscurity,” 12, high or low (it’s quite low). A percentile, and maybe something on the Zeitgeist page would be a good idea.

I’m very open to other ideas. I can add read-date statistics, for those of you using those fields. Ditto BCID fields. I could do tag-obscurity, for what that’s worth. I’d like to work with page counts; I have the data for some books and can get it for others. In theory I should be able to extract publishers from ISBNs (I can do it from the publishers field too, but that’s too messy). But extracting publishers from ISBNs requires a big database, and I think it’s one I need to pay for, from Bowker I think.

Some other ideas would require a more serious integration with library data—language, date of original publication, etc. Nicole on the LibraryThing discussion group suggested “some kind of histogram of the distribution of your books on the LoC classification
system.” That’s a good idea too.

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