Blogosphere–the wild blue yonder

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“Automated Ontologically-Based Link Analysis of International Web Logs for the Timely Discovery of Relevant and Credible Information.”

Like the name? “How About Those Blogs?!” would flow better from the tongue, but for $450,000, you have to have a killer name for your study. “Automated Ontologically-Based Link Analysis of International Web Logs for the Timely Discovery of Relevant and Credible Information” (hereafter to be referred to as AOBLAIWLTDRCI) is a three-year project of the Air Force Office of Scientific Research. Dr. Brian E. Ulicny says “It can be challenging for information analysts to tell what’s important in blogs unless you analyze patterns.”

The researchers plan to develop an automated tool that tells analysts what topics bloggers are interestd in at any given time. If this sounds something like a search engine, the scientists agree, but say it is more focused. Says Ulicny:

Blog entries have a different structure. They are typically short and are about something external to the blog posting itself, such as a news event. It’s not uncommon for a blogger to simply state, ‘I can’t believe this happened,’ and then link to a news story.

What does the Air force hope to do with the results of AOBLAIWLTDRCI?

The fact that the web is a vast source of information is sometimes overlooked by military analyst. Our research goal is to provide the warfighter with a kind of information radar to better understand the information battlespace.

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THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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