#debatQC – Analyse

Le débat des chefs durant la dernière campagne électorale était le premier débat où une quantité significative de personnes ont pu commenter le débat à l’aide des médias sociaux. En utilisant l’engin de récupération des Tweets d’IndiceQuebec, nous avons pu récupérer l’ensemble ou du moins une bonne partie des tweets politiques publiés par les Québécois actifs sur Twitter.

L’image à gauche est une analyse du premier débat à Radio-Canada. La deuxième image (cliquez sur Read more) traite des faces à faces diffusées au réseau TVA.

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Visualisation de la #GGI – Mise à jour!

Après plus de 100 jours et plusieurs centaines de milliers de tweets, le paysage médiatique et politique de la grève a bien changé. Quelques personnes sur twitter, facebook, par courriel ou de vive voix m’ont suggéré de mettre à jour la première visualisation avec des données plus récentes.

C’est ce que j’ai fait. En cliquant sur l’image, vous devriez obtenir l’image agrandie. Sinon, en cliquant ici, vous pourrez télécharger une version vectorielle en haute-résolution.

J’ai également fait une petite étude sur l’évolution des sujets (extraits algorithmiquement) présents dans les tweets traitant de la grève. On remarque que certains sujets sont transitoires et d’autres plus permanents.

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Visualisation – Structure d’influence du conflit étudiant

Depuis plus de 100 jours, les étudiants et le gouvernement s’affrontent dans les médias traditionnels et les médias sociaux. Les médias sociaux nous offrent la chance d’analyser l’opinion publique sans passer par de coûteux sondages. Évidemment, cette méthode comporte des biais. Par exemple, les individus plus politisés sont bien plus présents sur les médias sociaux. Néanmoins, les médias sociaux demeurent une façon extrêmement intéressante d’analyser les mouvements sociaux à un niveau très désagrégé, soit au niveau des individus.

L’infographie précédente caractérisait le contenu des tweets, celle-ci s’attarde plutôt à la structure des interactions entre les individus. Comme dans l’infographie précédente, un histogramme illustre le nombre de tweets publiés par jour selon différents mots-clics (soit tous les tweets, #manifencours et #casseroles). Il est important de mentionner que les histogrammes sont normalisés, c’est-à-dire que pour chaque histogramme, la valeur maximale est utilisée pour pondérer chaque graphe. Cette méthodologie permet d’illustrer efficacement les variations de chaque série.

Une version haute-résolution en format PDF est disponible ici.

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Visualisation des tweets de la grève étudiante

Peu importe l’opinion que l’on peut avoir sur la grève, il n’en demeure pas moins qu’elle doit être la grève la plus “tweeté” de l’histoire québécoise. Il s’agit donc d’une chance inégalée d’analyser ce mouvement social.

J’ai donc conçu cette petite infographie à l’aide de tweets que j’ai capturés. J’ai utilisé les hashtags suivants pour intercepter les tweets ayant comme sujet la grève: #ggi #non1625 et #22mar.

Il est possible de télécharger une version PDF en haute résolution de cette infographie [en cliquant ici].

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Scientific collaborations by Metropolitan Statistical Areas

I had a lot of positive feedback last year when I designed my map of scientific collaborations. I think that there were two main reasons for this interest. First of all, the map was visually striking; it was abstract but it could still convey useful information about the world. Secondly, I think that the interest that people have in maps is mainly egocentric. In other words, the first thing that we look for when looking at a map, is to see where and how our house, state, country, etc. are represented on that map.

This time I wanted to design a much more detailed map, one that could help to make decisions or help understand scientific collaborations. The USA is a very interesting country because they fund science in such a massive way. Also, the United States is a land of contrasts where no two states are alike and this makes for interesting comparisons. Continue Reading

Contributing Communities on Wikipedia

This summer I was contacted by Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, a Californian Ad Agency in San Francisco working with Adobe Systems. GS&P hired me to design an interactive visualization for their Museum of Digital Media to illustrate how people contribute to Wikipedia and how these contributors form communities.

This was a challenge I could not refuse.

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Mapping Political Financing in Montréal

Using the data cleaned and released by Cedric Sam and Thomas de Lorimier (available on Cyberpresse), I geocoded the data and applied a density map function. The map shows interesting financial patterns in Montréal for the Bloc Québecois and for the Liberal Party of Canada. I’ve chosen those two parties since they have a strong historical influence in Montréal. As we can see on the map, the western part of Montréal is clearly Liberal while the east is more aligned with the Bloc Québécois.

The most interesting clusters are on both sides of Mount Royal. One side, situated in Westmount, contributes noticeably to the PLC while the other side, in Outremont, donates more to the Bloc Québec. To anybody living in Montréal, it’s hardly a surprising fact, but I think it’s nice to see it on a map.

Content Analysis of the Leaders’ English Debate

Le débat des chefs offre l’occasion de faire des analyses de contenus très intéressantes. En effet, les politiques des partis et les opinions des chefs sont condensées et distillés à l’extrême. Il est donc possible de brosser un tableau impressionniste des préoccupations canadiennes (ou du moins, celle des chefs). Malheureusement, la transcription du débat francophone n’est pas disponible; alors, l’analyse portera sur le débat anglophone.

The leaders’ debate is a golden opportunity to measure the Canadian political landscape as the primary talking points of the leaders and their parties are condensed into a manageable size. Using the transcript of the debate, I used a co-word analysis to try to extract the gist of the debate. I think the resulting maps are interesting and can shed light on current political trends.

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Legislative Explorer | Multidimensional Vote Explorer

Less visually striking than my last project, this visualization shows the voting patterns of Canadian Members of Parliament. It uses a Principal Component Analysis (or PCA) transformation to convert the multidimensional voting record of each MP to a 2D (or Cartesian) form.

Each point on the chart represents an MP. The color of every MP follows their party affiliation. They are tightly clustered because of party discipline :  in Canada, MPs normally vote in accordance to directions given by the Prime Minister.

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Map of scientific collaboration between researchers

I was very impressed by the friendship map made by Facebook intern, Paul Butler and I realized that I had access to a similar dataset at Science-Metrix (an old employer I left a while ago). Instead of a database of friendship data, I had access to a database of scientific collaborations. Bibliometric firms use this kind of data to get a (very) approximated view of science, but I thought that for a data visualization, it was good enough

This post is now obsolete, please see the new one (click here!)

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Incoming call popup under Ubuntu and Asterisk

When I worked in a survey firm, I was tasked with building a VOIP system to cut costs and to raise productivity. The biggest productivity drain in an outbound call center is the dialing time and getting someone on the line. By implementing an Asterisk server, we could control and expand the server to our needs. Furthermore, this meant we could have remote workers. We saved a bundle of money in long distance and in fixed costs. The hosted server and the bandwidth itself cost about 80$ a month, while the connectivity to the phone network was negligible and, more importantly, flexible. In other words, if it was a slow month, the cost was low, and conversely, if it was a very busy month, the costs were higher but the money was coming in.

Incoming call popup

Incoming call popup

Since it was my server and I was billing the company for it, I figured I could use the same server for my personal phones. So I decided to connect my PSTN numbers to this system. I could now use the server as my private VOIP server.

After configuring the VOIP server to my liking, I started to explore the Asterisk API and related Java and Python bindings. My first module was an interactive IVR system to manage callbacks from the survey outbound number. The callers could know who called them and remove their number from our calling lists.

Update (2012): Modified code for asterisk 1.6
Update (2014): Added code (end of page) for KDE

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Using Crystal Reports with Limesurvey

While Limesurvey is a very nice tool to create and manage web surveys, it’s a bit lacking in the reporting area. The functions are a limited and even if you want a quick and dirty, but presentable report, you must export the data and use other tools to format and present the answers to the survey.

Limesurvey results imported in Crystal Reports

Limesurvey results imported in Crystal Reports

The problem is the way how Limesurvey stores its data, more specifically the recorded answers. Every column in the table contains theanswer for the question identified by the column and each line (or record) contains a respondent. It seems like a very sensible way to store the respondent’s answers, but the trouble is that it’s very difficult to construct a generic report template in reporting tools with this kind of table schema. To be of any use, the table data have to be converted in a usable form. Furthermore, the schema used by Limesurvey is less than optimal and doesn’t use foreign keys to link tables. This complicates everything.

To convert the answer table data, I’ve written a little python script. It should be pretty plug-and-play. To use it, you have to change the database access variables. The script only takes one argument, the survey id. You can get the survey id in Limesurvey’s administration panel. It should follow the survey title when you select a survey in the administration panel. Continue Reading

Hi there

This blog is where I will share my small discoveries and realizations while practicing my English. Who knows, I might even help someone save a couple hours of head scratching by publishing the results of my own head scratching.