I came across a clever web site named Wikirank, which provides visualisation tools to explore and compare the usage data from wikipedia.org.
If you’re wondering how Wikirank could manage that, wikipedia.org provide access to their web server traffic logs as a service to the community for free. Wikirank consumes that public data, analyses it and provides a convenient way to see what topics on wikipedia.org are popular at the moment.
Wikirank isn’t just a tool to find out what is popular at the moment though, it also lets you view the usage data on a nominated page over time, up to the last 90 days. That sort of functionality is great, as it lets you see how a particular topic is being received among the community. Not wanting to stop there though, Wikirank also lets you compare different topics as well. The example on the Wikirank home page at the moment is who is more popular out of John, Paul, George or Ringo from The Beatles and according to Wikirank, John Lennon is nearly twice as popular as Paul McCartney.
I think Wikirank is going to be a fantastic companion to the primary wikipedia.org web site. It’d be facinating if they spun off a wikianalytics.com and broke down the usage data from wikipedia.org and allowed people to explore that data in a similar but cutdown fashion to what Google Analtyics provides.