Our online browsing history is intensely personal. Our search terms and the web-pages we visit, reveal our fears, interests, illnesses, and secret ambitions. While many people are familiar with the concept of behavior-tracking and cookies, there is significantly less public awareness of just how personal our online behavior is.
A few years ago, the immersion project originating at the MIT Media Lab received world-wide press coverage by visualizing the latent social information contained in our email header information. We aim to do something similar for web-browsing. Using topic models, we aim to design a simple dashboard that allows individuals to visualize the content of their browsing, and observe how these topics change over time. Crucially, we will combine this visualization with information on data trackers (how many tracking parties, how much outgoing information), thus allowing users to directly observe what the data tracking means for them.
Collected, as well as computed data, will be stored in safe, individualized ‘vaults’ in a storage system following the OpenPDS framework specification. Ipso facto ensuring strict sovereignty of users over their data.