Class Projects - Spring 2015

NUze

A display/site that shows what people are saying about and around Northwestern in real-time from a variety of sources.

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What it does

NUze aggregates social media posts and news articles as they pertain to Northwestern University to create a window into the campus’ digital personality.

Catching up on our social media and news has become a multi-step process. First you open Twitter and scroll through your latest tweets. Then you tap open Instagram and swipe through your feed there. Next it’s Yik Yak and after that, you still need to go check out your favorite news websites to see what they’ve posted.

NUze reduces this to two steps – open up our application and scroll away. Like many social media-centric platforms, users can view either the most popular content or the most recent content. It’s streamlined way to view content around a single focus point, which in this case is a location.

NUze tailors the content to focus on Northwestern related posts whether it be through proximity of the geotag to campus or official Northwestern accounts. This allows people outside the Northwestern community such potential new students to access posts they would not find in their own social media feeds. 


How it works

Using the Twitter API, Instagram API, an internal Yik Yak API we are able to retrieve local social media posts from Northwestern related accounts and those posting within a limited radius of Northwestern’s campus. We also gathered recent news articles from Northwestern news sources such as The Daily Northwestern through their RSS feeds and utilizing the Google Feed API. We poll these sources every 60 seconds to update our conglomerate NUze feed of Northwestern-centric posts. The web page has two tabs. The new tab orders the content by the time it was posted. The popular tab calculates a score for each post based on its popularity in its original form (ie. a tweet’s score is calculated based on the sum of its retweets and favorites). The scores for each type of post are scaled up or down based on the average score for that type source (ie. Yak scores must be scaled down in relation to likes on Instagram) in order to further integrate the different content types.

Key Technologies:

●Twitter API

●Instagram API

●Yik Yak Internal API

●Google Feed API

●Backbone.js


Next Steps

Going forward, for this iteration, we would like to add a way to search the newsfeed as well as a way to filter content by keyword. We would also like to add in more Twitter accounts to our feed.

However, the real future of this application would be in expanding it to pull in content from any geo-fenced location, be it a college campus, a major political event, a national disaster, etc.

Caption: NUze aggregates Northwestern-related content from Twitter, Instagram, YikYak, and RSS feeds into a master newsfeed that can be sorted by new or popular. 

Connect

https://github.com/AlJohri/nuze


Atul Johri

Alysha Khan

Ryan Madden

Anna Selonick