Analysis of data: ‘Unusual’ spikes in data in Twitter’s ‘Tachograph’ data analysis practice Independent
Analyzing data on Twitter’s “Tachographs” data analysis and usage practices, a group of researchers from University of Waterloo and McGill University has discovered a series of spikes in the number of tweets that are uploaded and deleted each minute.
“There’s a pretty significant spike when we take a look at a dataset like this, which is quite different from other datasets,” said Daniel Rizzo, an associate professor in the Department of Statistics at Waterloo who led the study.
“And the reason we see this spike is that we’re actually looking at something that’s not normally happening.”
While the study focused on the first five days of the week, Rizzos research team said they could potentially observe more spikes in activity in the last two weeks of the month.
“When we look at data for the last week, we can see that it’s really a bit odd that the week after we saw the spike, the spike is actually much smaller than usual,” he said.
“So we could see the spikes that we normally see when we look back at data in a period of weeks, like we see a big spike at the end of the last quarter, or we could have a smaller spike in the middle of the year.”
Rizzoa said the spike was not as noticeable as some other spikes they’d observed, but the researchers say it was interesting.
“If you look at these spikes, they’re not as obvious,” he added.
“It’s a lot of different spikes.
So, it’s interesting to see what we see, even if it’s a few seconds.”
Researchers also said the researchers had not yet been able to correlate the spikes with other trends on Twitter.
“We can’t tell for sure how the spike relates to other trends,” said Rizzoos co-author David Sussman.
“But the fact that it appears to be linked to the election, which we’ve seen many times in this election cycle, makes it quite interesting.
It’s very hard to say for sure, but it’s possible it’s tied to it.”
The study was published in the journal Computers in Human Behavior.
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