Openlumify

I worked for a “data discovery and analytics platform” company1 for a couple of years, and got to see first-hand the power of graph-based datastores for analysis, hypothesis-testing and pattern discovery. It truly was an example of intelligence amplification and allowed the analysts I worked with to work more effectively than ever.

Since that day I've had a desire to map things out, to build a kind of mega-mindmap2 to really understand some of the more complex and complicated situations — ancient and modern history, the middle east, US politics, the powerful people behind every conspiracy theory imaginable…

So I was quite happy to see that someone somewhere had started an opensource graph-based analysis suite of a similar sort. Unfortunately by the time I found it, it had become abandonware, moving from open- to (assumed) closed-source by the IP owner, who was then bought by another company, then again, renamed, ad absurdum infinitum. I grabbed the last opensource I could find and have started on the long journey to revive it.

So far I've updated the build (Maven! Eek) to work with Java 9+ and refactored everything to theorg.openlumify package. It builds, it runs … but I can't login.

If only there were more hours in the night or day!

Some plans

In no particular order …

• get it running
• build containers
• make it work in Kubernetes
• make sure it has a timeline and a map (at least!)
• pick a decent backend datastore and implement it
• setup a project website
• host it somewhere online e.g. for investigative journos
• karma!

1. I don't want to say their name, even after all these years, since I once tweeted the name — quite innocuously — and it eventually came back through the ‘peer network’ (no hierarchies, man). Probably not a huge deal, but I was super creeped out that they were actively watching for public mentions and performing sentiment analysis and someone with fewer than a hundred followers would actually catch any attention at all. ↩︎

2. Hey, I've loved mindmaps since the day I discovered them. Feels like I've been drawing and redrawing the same few maps — with alterations — for most of my life, anytime I was feeling lost or overwhelmed. Most recently I've recreated them in Simplemind, but there are notebooks upon notebooks exploring my plans, desires, perceived strengths and weaknesses. ↩︎