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17 ways to visualize Twitter and its Tweets

In our increasingly visual culture, it's no surprise that someone has taken the time to visualize the data flow of Twitter and all of its tweets. It is a surprise, however, that seventeen different groups or individuals found a way to visualize Twitter tweets, each in a unique and supposedly helpful way (and our guess is that there's probably more out there).

The seventeen visualizations of the Twitter universe fall into four categories: network diagrams, maps, analytics, and abstract. Network diagrams center their visualizations around a particular topic or user. The maps visualizations are based, obviously, on location.

The analytics section is probably the most useful in the short- and long-run: you can find Tweet stats on individual words or phrases, measure the volume of tweets in a month or day, and measure real-time system-wide Twitter stats. The abstract section is, well, abstract. As in words can't quite describe, you have to see for yourself abstract.

The visualizations range from the decidedly useful (like TwitStat) to the simply confusing (Twitter Vrienden, see above image) to the just plain huh? category (e.g., twitter blocks).

Check them out, and tell us which one is your favorite in the comments.

Tags: tweets, twitter, visualizations