Liveplasma.com, an online site for music and, more recently, movies, graphically 'maps' shoppers' potential interests. A search for music by Coldplay, for example, brings up a graphical representation of what previous customers of Coldplay music have purchased, presented in clusters of circles of various sizes.
The bigger the circle, the greater the popularity of that band. The circles are clustered into orbits representing groups of customers with similar preferences.
"This is a way of showing recommendations that are vastly more useful than textual links," said Whit Andrews, a research vice president at Gartner Inc., a market research company in Stamford, Conn.
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