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Getting Granular on Twitter


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These slides accompany a refereed paper presented at the World Computer Congress in September, 2010 in Brisbane, Australia.

These slides accompany a refereed paper presented at the World Computer Congress in September, 2010 in Brisbane, Australia.

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  • 1. Getting Granular on Twitter:Tweets from a Conference and Their Limited Usefulness for Non-participants
    Martin Ebner, Herbert Mühlburger, Sandra Schaffert, Mandy Schiefner, Wolfgang Reinhardt, and Steve Wheeler
  • 2. Increase indevices
  • 3. Mobile Learning?
  • 4. “….learning materials must be designed for easy access by the nomadic learners during using mobile technology regardless of where they are located and which network infrastructure they are using to access information”
    Allen, 2007
  • 5. Microblogging is a small-scale form of blogging, generally made up of short, succinct messages, used by both users and business to share news, post status updates and carry on conversations
    Templeton, 2008
  • 6. Is microblogging a possibility for a specific community to exchange ideas, interests and information?
  • 7. on December 15, 2008)
  • 8.
  • 9.
  • 10. Different kind of people using microblogs
    Templeton, 2008
    Java et al, 2007
    Daily Chatter
  • 11.
  • 12. Twitter is fine for chat, but how can we use it for reporting at scientific conferences?
  • 13. Pre-studies – Use of Twitter at conferences
    • ED-Media 2008
    • 14. Summer School 2008
    • 15. ED-Media 2009
  • 16. Twitter stream beside keynote (ED-Media 2008)
  • 17. “in the background we discussed things more deeply than the guys on the stage”
    “Twitter can be distracting - you pay less attention”
  • 18. Number of Tweets at ED-Media 2009
  • 19. “... top trend makers show who is the heartbeat of this online community and the key terms pointed out, what the community was talking about”
  • 20. Research outcomes – Twitter can be used in the context of conferences:
    • for communication amongst participants
    • 21. for communication amongst organizers /presenters and audience
    • 22. for reporting to non-participants about the conference
    “Event Amplification”
  • 23. Research Question:
    Is Twitter useful to report from a conference in order to share the event with the scientific community outsidethe conference?
  • 24. Study:
    • Educamp Hamburg 2010 (barcamp; unconference)
    • 25. Twitter was monitored from 5.2 – 4.3.2010 (usedHashtag #ec10hh)
    • 26. In summary 2110 tweets were examined
    • 27. Two stage analysis – automatically and manually
  • Four categories of Tweets:
    • Irrelevant Tweets “Who found my drinking cup? #ec10hh”
    • 28. Administrative Tweets “Wifi is not available #ec10hh”
    • 29. Topical Discussions “nice idea of @estudyskills Aggregation of all student weblogs at Tumblelog gives overview”
    • 30. Topical Tweets “open-learning: initiative on OER usage for informal education: #ec10hh”
  • Categories of Tweets (manual analysis)
  • 31. Detailed Analysis of Tweets (manual analysis)
  • 32. Discussion
    • Keyword extraction (automatically analysis) did not show any interesting result – no direct correlation
    • 33. In average each user posted 6 tweets during the conference period
    • 34. High number of Retweets (18%) – often not useful without the necessary context
  • Main Outcome:
    If we reduce the tweets to those occurring during the conference period (5th and 6th February) only 120 posts are of interest at all, which relates to about 6%
  • 35. Interpretation – Twitter usage follows other logic:
    • usage as backchannel with limited comprehension potential for outsiders
    • 36. usage of self promotion and profiling to generate attention for own profile
    • 37. documentation and illustrating connections
    • 38. usage as a public notepad
    • 39. usage as an evaluation tool
  • Outlook:
    What must a web-based applicationthat can also be used offline (without Internet connection) for information retrievaland knowledge discoverybased on a micro-content system like Twitter look like?
  • 40.
  • 41. Archive and Searchoffline
  • 42. Grabeeter allows ...
    • Micro-content (tweets) is achievable due to the fact that any tweet can be retrieved at anytime from a local hard-drive
    • 43. Micro-content is storable in a way that the user can distinguish between different events
    • 44. Micro-content is searchable along keywords, hashtags, time frames as well as different entities (URLs, @, ... )
  • Microblogging has potential for the future
    - if we see it as a new
    communication channel
  • 45. Grab and Search your Tweets
    Slides available at:
    Computer and Information Services
    Graz University of Technology
    Martin Ebner