Infographic of the Day: Visualizing News Stories, as a Huge Social Network

Slates News Dots features offers a new way of connecting the threads between the day’s news.


Intuitively, we all know that big news topics relate to other big news topics–when you read about Google, you’re likely also reading about Microsoft.


This new tool from Slate makes those connections a bit more concrete. News Dots automatically scans all of the articles from major publications, and then tags them using Calais, an automated tagging engine created by Thompson Reuters. When two stories share a tag, it records the results:

News Dots

(Click on the interactive version here.)

The hope, of course, is that as the tool develops, “social networks” will develop in clusters, the same way that Facebook friends tend to cluster around college acquaintance. 

Granted, the interface is currently hideous. But you wonder if something like this isn’t the future of news browsing. Can you imagine what happens when tagging technology gets truly semantic–when stories can be linked not just with keywords, but ideas?

[Via Flowing Data]

About the author

Cliff was director of product innovation at Fast Company, founding editor of Co.Design, and former design editor at both Fast Company and Wired.