Sunday, February 12, 2012

US seeks to mine social media to predict future

Analyzing public information is nothing new in the world of intelligence. During the Cold War, for example, CIA operatives read Russian newspapers and intercepted television and radio broadcasts in hopes of inferring what Soviet leaders were thinking.

But the rise of social media over the past few years has dramatically changed both the kinds and amount of freely available information. For example, Twitter CEO Dick Costolo said at a recent conference that users of the micro-blogging service send out an average of one billion tweets every three days.