The Weight of Words is a web-based artwork designed to capture snapshots of Twitter discussions concerning the most popular topics of the day. The growth of social media in recent years has led to a sharp increase in thought and opinion sharing among the vocal population on the Internet. Twitter's use of trending topics allows users to be aware, and be a part of fun or silly stories as well as important news headlines and social movements. The Weight of Words is an exploration into using Twitter's always changing landscape of conversation to generate graphic visualizations based on the most frequently used words at the time. This thesis includes a discussion regarding design considerations, application architecture, and data mining, as well as an examination of data visualization, social media, and human behavior. Through the construction of these visualizations I aim to provide a unique opportunity to discover patterns and trends from the popular topics of that current day. By providing viewers of this work with a unique perspective, I hope to encourage reflection and discussion of the current state of our culture's behavior and values.
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Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.)
College of Arts and Humanities
Visual Arts and Design
Emerging Media; Digital Media
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
McSwain, Daniel, "The Weight of Words: Collecting and Visualizing Data from Twitter" (2016). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 5253.