Twitter Data Mining Tips

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Great thing about Twitter (and other microblogging platforms) is accessibility of real-time informations, available at the moment of happening to whole world. This amazing feature has few impressive implications on how we see and use web services. We shouldn't ignore Twitter search engine, it is much more than simple search form because informations available are instant and if used properly we can transform this into real-time data mining tool.

Two modes of Twitter search engine are available, advanced search page and Twitter search operators. Search plugin for Firefox is available and if you are familiar with operators, this is the best searching solution. Actually, advanced search form gives same functionality as operators, but you need to load the page. Ah!

Advanced Twitter Search

Advanced Twitter search gives you an opportunity to find tweets based on words, people, places, dates, attitudes and presence of links. Operators do the same. Query : web2.0 directory will find all tweets containing both terms web2.0 and directory. Searching for phrase is same as with Google, you need to use quotes. Operator OR is logical operator of two queries. Operator - (minus) is logical operator that works similar as logical NOT. Other operators are : # - hashtag, from:, to:, @, near:, within:, since:, until:, :), :(, ? and operator filter:links.

Let's see some examples. If you want to find out who needs or offers help with web design use: web design help ? Now if you want to include only those who live near NYC use near and within: web design help ? near:London within:200mi. Notice how this query is very specific and you may get just few results. If you want to find out who wants to sell his house near New Orleans from some unexplained reason, try this query: sell house near:NewOrleans within:200mi. Now, what kind of car people buy these days? Try this query: "my new car" filter:links. Interesting results, don't you think?

Care to share what query did you use to help you find valuable informations?

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