When I not working either with Danny and Chris on the blog or my other sites, I’m a movie fan. In fact, my undergrad degree is in film studies. Of course, movie databases, well those are things I want to know about. It’s no surprise then that I’m a big fan and regular user of The Internet Movie Database (IMDb) from Amazon.com. Some of you might remember that a few weeks ago I took an in-depth look at the many and powerful advanced search features the IMDb offers. It’s amazing what this database can do.
So, when I learned of a new beta tool from the IMDb that could be found in the “fun” category, I immediately had to have a look. Then, things got very busy and I didn’t have time to post on this new feature called MoKA (Movie Keywords Analyzer).
So, what is the MoKA (Movie Keywords Analyzer) all about? Well, it’s hard to describe and a few minutes of just trying it out will make you an expert. Nevertheless, here’s a brief overview.
IMDb presents a fun new tool for finding and discovering film and television titles within our large catalog. MoKA lets you find titles that have a particular keyword and then presents a tally of all keywords from the titles that matched your initial keyword set.
Often overlooked is the fact that all entries in the IMDB have been assigned keywords that describe the plot by for each tv/film entry by members of the IMDb community and editors. More about IMDb keywords and how they work here. Editors are also part of the process and review submissions. For example, the film The Matrix lists around 100 “plot keywords.” Btw, links to “plot keywords” are found in the left column of “Plots & Quotes” section every entry. Here’s another example, of keywords, this time for the tv show, The O.C..
Each keyword itself is hyperlinked into MoKA or you can access by going directly here.
Once on the MoKA page, simply enter a keyword to start the ball rolling OR simply click a keyword from each entry. You can also browse keywords.
+ I’ll browse the list of keywords that begin with the letter M. Wow, that’s quite a list. Each entry has how many times it appears in the database.
+ I’ll select Magic.
+ Now you’re taken to a page and see the relationship between the keyword magic and other keywords along with a list of films that have that keyword. Click other keywords and narrow and focus your list. Like many tag clouds the larger the type the more popular the keyword.
For example: Magic + “Based on Book” + King Arthur gave me this list of two films.
As I said in the beginning of this post, MoKA can be fun, interesting (especially for film buffs) and a great way to spend some spare time.
Finally, here are some games to play with MoKA as mentioned on the website.
* Start with a theme/keyword you like, then add new themes to narrow in on a title you’d like to see
* Randomly click on a few keywords (but deliberately avoid seeing what you clicked on) and see if you can guess the common theme/keywords
* What’s the longest string of keywords that leads to a single title?
* Find accurate, yet unexpected results
* Find the oldest/newest/shortest/longest film for a particular set of keywords
* Quiz your film buff friends by seeing if they can identify a title by just the keywords
* Most importantly, help us improve IMDb by adding/updating/editing/deleting keywords from our database!
Postscript: I’ll add that I immediately thought of Philipp Lenssen from Google Blogoscoped when I first learned of MoKA. Why? A regular reader of GB knows that PL often posts about film. Philipp also loves games and I wouldn’t be surprised if he has some that utilize MoKA very soon.