Wednesday, September 30, 2009


Trendwatching with Twitter

by Larry Geller

On Saturday I posted an article showing how search trends compiled by Google can be used to track and perhaps predict an economic recovery.

Today let’s look at trends closer to the moment- key words appearing in Tweets, mapped for us by Trendsmap. The website explains how it works. Here’s Hawaii:


I left out the Big Island and Kauai because no one is tweeting there at all at the moment, according to the map.

The key words are visible only when moused over, which means the above illustration isn’t legible.

The key words for Oahu include Samoa,tsunami, protest, Pacific, culture, Indonesia, Hilton, army, typhoon. Over Maui we find three: Lahaina, tournament and accommodations.

Here is the Philippines at this moment, just after devastating floods:


Lots more tweets there.

Honduras is quiet, I think they are asleep. Here’s Iran:


What use is this? I don’t know yet, but maybe you have some ideas. It’s certainly an interesting way to tap into the immediate consciousness. I’d love to check this during a political speech, for example, a during televised presidential address. Or while Lost is broadcast. Or during a World Series game.


Perhaps it's a map for creating some Joyceiam flow-of-consciousness prose...

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