The Collaborative User Experience research group of IBM has done some analysis on Wikipedia pages, visualizing change to pages in terms of a History Flow.
history flow provides answers at a glance to questions like, Has a community contributed to the text or has it been mostly written by a single author? How much has a particular contributor influenced the current version of the document? Is the text‘s evolution marked by spurts of intense revision activity or does it reflect a smooth transition from its beginning to the present?
Makes pretty impressive and informative graphics and is an interesting approach to tackle the problem of mass data visualization in a social space. Handling of typical problem domains like Vandalism, the origin of content in terms of registered and unregistered users, growth, evolution and age of content are all becoming much clearer.
Have a look at some of the results of the analysis for a description on color and brightness are used to emphasize certain characteristics . The gallery provides even bigger and much detailed pictures. These graphs tell a lot about the rushed public interest in certain topics like „Islam“ or „Iraq“ and demonstrate the slow, evolutionary growth of mostly undisputed topics like „Love„.