[FoME] MeCoDEM offers open-source tool “Mecodify” for simplifying big data analysis and visualisation

Ines Drefs drefsi at hotmail.de
Mi Nov 23 10:30:37 CET 2016


How often has the hashtag #paybackthemoney been used on Twitter around Jacob Zuma's 2015 State of the Nation Address to the South African parliament? Who were the most influential tweeters in the trolling attacks on Serbia's ombudsman?
These are just two of the questions MeCoDEM researchers tackled in their analyses of social media's contribution to the dynamics of democratisation conflicts in Egypt, Serbia, South Africa and Kenya. They used "Mecodify" - a tool developed as part of MeCoDEM's work package "ICTs and democratisation conflicts" - which helps to extract, analyse and visualise tweets in relation to particular events. Mecodify is now available for public use.

Download, free demo and more information are available here: http://www.mecodem.eu/mecodify/

Mecodify's interface was built in such a way that it allows users to utilise its service without having to learn coding or acquire any technical skills. It is a simple and effective tool even for newcomers to big data analysis who don't have vast technical experience. The following features help to produce insightful analyses:

     * TABLES & GRAPHS: Mecodify can be used to extract, analyse and visualise data in the form of tables and graphs with timelines and many features such as overlays and flags - for example for comparing real events with Twitter activity.

     * USEFUL FILTERS: By providing a set of filters, Mecodify makes it is possible to inspect data thoroughly and focus on different segments of interest and create graphs - for example to measure the usage of Twitter hashtags.

     * NETWORK ANALYSIS: While the timeline graph gives details of messages over time, one can also plot graphs of users and analyse relationships that emerge from the data - for example for identifying influential tweeters.

Note: Mecodify is in its initial stage of development and currently only supports Twitter but aims to expand to support other platforms that have APIs for data extraction. If you wish to volunteer your time by coding, testing, helping us get funding, or with any other ideas, we would love to hear from you.

MeCoDEM began on 1 February 2014 and will run over three years. The project investigates the interplay of communication and democratisation conflicts in four countries, Egypt, Kenya, Serbia and South Africa, each of them representing unique aspects of transitional / post-transitional divisions. Based on a comparative case study design, the research covers constitutional conflicts, civic conflicts and conflicts surrounding accountability and good governance. These conflicts constitute arenas of dispute where the media interact with the communicative strategies of governments on the one hand, and political activists and political movements struggling for recognition on the other. MeCoDEM is funded by the European Union within the EU's Seventh Framework Programme. With a budget of 2.2 million Euros, the project consortium includes eight partner institutions from six countries: University of Leeds (coordinating institution), University of Belgrade, University of Hamburg, University of Cape Town, University of Oxford, Stockholm University, Ruhr University Bochum and American University in Cairo.

Dr Walid Al-Saqaf | walid.al-saqaf at ims.su.se

Prof Barbara Thomass | Barbara.Thomass at rub.de
Website: www.mecodem.eu | Twitter:@MeCoDEM

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