suspicious infoviz of the day

October 09, 2008

Just found out about Political Streams.

I really do like this idea, but reinventing the pie chart with those desaturated squares is not a good start. I'll be checking it out to see how they iterate on representing the concept, which is fascinating.

It mines information from all the blogs and Web sites out there, and all on one screen, lets you see the relative popularity of any given story, whether it's trending up or down, and tracks the number of mentions of the people and places mentioned in the story.

The graphs, by contrast are wonderful and straightforward:

oh and cf. Microsoft Blews (TM) which has similar data (and infoviz problems).

While typical news-aggregation sites do a good job of clustering news stories according to topic, they leave the reader without information about which stories figure prominently in political discourse. BLEWS uses political blogs to categorize news stories according to their reception in the conservative and liberal blogospheres. It visualizes information about which stories are linked to from conservative and liberal blogs, and it indicates the level of emotional charge in the discussion of the news story or topic at hand in both political camps. BLEWS also offers a 'see the view from the other side' functionality, enabling a reader to compare different views on the same story from different sides of the political spectrum. BLEWS achieves this goal by digesting and analyzing a real-time feed of political-blog posts provided by the Live Labs Social Media platform, adding both link analysis and text analysis of the blog posts.