Word clouds are generally not all that helpful given how the words are taken out of their context (sentences). In certain settings, however, they do provide meaningful information. Hashtags are one of those contexts — they are meant to be single words. With that, here is a word cloud generated using all of the hashtags […]
For the complete beginner, getting up and running in a new programming language can be a daunting task. I’ll try to simplify it here by walking you through the key steps. Choose a version of Python There is more than one version of the Python language. Most people choose between version 2.7 and 3.3. Go […]
One of the PhD students I work with, Weiai Xu, has put together an informative slideshow for how to download Twitter data: Curiosity Bits Tutorial: Mining Twitter User Profile on Python V2 from Weiai Wayne Xu For more, check out his website.
Academics and other researchers have to choose from a variety of research skills. Most social scientists do not add computer programming into their skill set. As a strong proponent of the value of learning a programming language, I will lay out how this has proven to be useful for me. A budding programmer could choose […]
The research I’ve done on organizations’ use of social media suggests there are three main types of messages that organizations send on social media: informational, community-building, and “action” (promotional & mobilizational) messages. Each type constitutes a different way of engaging with the intended audience: Informational messages serve to inform — about the organization’s activities or […]
I often get requests to explain how I obtained the data I used in a particular piece of academic research. I am always happy to share my code along with my data (and frankly, I think academics who are unwilling to share should be forced to take remedial Kindergarten). The problem is, many of those […]