Published On: Tue, Jul 17th, 2012

Map of history’s most influential thinkers

Bredan Griffen has produced an incredible image / map of how the most influential thinkers have impacted each other, which is perfect for Future, History. Now. which is a website focused on looking how the past influences the present and how the present will influence the future.

Aristotle, Plato, Kant, Hegel, Nietche, Marx are obviously influential.  Stephen King, HP Lovecraft, HG Wells, Richard Pryor, George Carlin are less so:

All of the thinkers and authors in history – in ONE graph!

Think of an author/philosopher/comedian. Now find the author by locating their known influences on the graph – these help you find who you’re looking for because like-minded people are clustered together! Use this graph to discover influential people!

How does this graph work?
The nodes represent all of the thinkers and comedians on Wikipedia. The size of the nodes indicates how influential their work was to all of the other members of the network. The graph was created by querying a database of Wikipedia and determining their influences (based on the info-boxes of each person).

Each community is colored based on their relationships within the network. Like-minded people are clustered together:

Red – 19th/20th century philosophers
Green – antiquity & enlightenment philosophers
Pink – enlightenment authors
Yellow – 19th/20th century authors
Orange – fiction authors
Purple – comedians

The interconnected nature of the graph illustrates the landscape of human ideas. Many great influential people are missing from the graph as this information has not become available yet. For the moment, this is a snapshot of the evolution of ideas, from earliest antiquity up until the present day.

Created By: Brendan Griffen (@brendangriffen)

Click here to look at the map. 

History Future Now, ebook edition, is now available from the Apple iBookstore!  So if you have a iPad or iPhone click on this link to download it.  It is currently on at a special offer of 99c.   The Kindle version has been submitted to Amazon and should be available shortly.

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