How Do You Use The Archivist?Sep 28, 2010 In News By Karsten Januszewski
The Archivist—our lab focused on archiving, analyzing and exporting tweets—just had its 3-month birthday. Hurray! The service has been humming along nicely, with over 150,000,000 tweets archived and over 20,000 unique visitors since June of 2010.
It’s always fascinating to find out all the ways in which the software we create gets used, many of which we never anticipated. Here’s a sampling of interesting uses of The Archivist we’ve seen since launch:
- Mashable used The Archivist to do an analysis of the popularity of different Android phones based on their Tweet volume.
- Chris Pirillo, well-known Internet celebrity, employed The Archivist to track tweets about the Gnomedex conference.
- In concert with Dr. Boynton’s article on using The Archivist in Academia was a fascinating piece by Mark Sample from The Chronicle of Higher Education, called Practical Advice for Teaching with Twitter. Sample’s tact is a little different than Boynton’s, in that he tracks students’ tweets about a given class. To facilitate this, he suggests that professors explicitly create and advertise a hashtag (aka #PHIL101) for their courses and then track that hashtag as the course proceeds. By using a tool like The Archivist,professors can then see which students tweeted the most during the course,which words were most commonly used, when tweets were most frequent (right before the end of the semester?), etc.
- Another fascinating example of Archivist usage came from Australian politics; you can read about it here and here. I’m not an expert on Australian politics so I can’t fully explicate what happened, but from what I can glean, a candidate in the election started tweeting controversial tweets that were ultimately tracked by The Archivist.
This is just a sample of how people are using The Archivist. But we’re certain there are other examples out there, given the service’s number of active users. In fact, we’re hoping to write up a whole article with examples of how people use The Archivist.
To that end, we’d like to offer $10 Starbuck’s gift cards to the first 5 people who send mail to firstname.lastname@example.org telling us how you use The Archivist. We’ll feature your submissions in our upcoming article. So don’t be shy – do tell!
Oh, and if you have any suggestions or ideas on what archives we should feature on the homepage, let us know that as well.