Translate Your Browsing History Into Art (If You Dare)

Shan Huang Shan Huang's "Iconic History"

Which sites do you visit most?

Think about the days you’ve spent on the Internet. What would they look like? Most likely, it’s an unintelligible blur of homepages and social networks and links connecting from one site to the next. Now, artist Shan Huang has created a way to clearly visualize your browsing history through favicons.

Favicons are the tiny little icons that show up on the top left of tabs in your browser—either you don’t notice them, or you use them religiously to keep track when you have way too many tabs open to read the URLs. Huang’s “Iconic History” Chrome extension turns all those little squares into a tapestry that shows you were you’ve been.

“Iconic History” tracks chronologically and by how many times you visit the URLs, making it easy to see where you spend the most time. My personal browsing history is a mosaic of Google, Facebook, and Twitter logos, plus a smattering of imgur and blogs. As the artist notes, it tells a story: “I thought browser history alone could narrate a significant portion of my life and what was on my mind,” Huang writes.

Just be careful of what kind of story your browser history tells. Pornography sites have very specific favicons that we are absolutely not familiar with and will not recognize when you post your favicon mosaic on Facebook. *tugs collar*

Tap to read full story

Your browser is out of date. Please update your browser at http://update.microsoft.com


Dear TIME Reader,

As a regular visitor to TIME.com, we are sure you enjoy all the great journalism created by our editors and reporters. Great journalism has great value, and it costs money to make it. One of the main ways we cover our costs is through advertising.

The use of software that blocks ads limits our ability to provide you with the journalism you enjoy. Consider turning your Ad Blocker off so that we can continue to provide the world class journalism you have become accustomed to.

The TIME Team