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The Social Collider [socialcollider.net] data visualization reveals cross-connections between conversations on Twitter. One can search for usernames or topics, which are tracked through time and visualized much like the way a particle collider draws pictures of subatomic matter. Posts that did not resonate with anyone just connect to the next item in the stream. The ones that did, however, spin off and horizontally link to users or topics who relate to them, either directly or in terms of their content.

The Social Collider by Sascha Pohflepp and Karsten Schmidt acts as a metaphorical instrument which can be used to make visible how memes get created and how they propagate. Ideally, it might catch the "zeitgeist" at work.

Like the previously blogged Social Weather Mapping visualization, the Social Collider project is part of the Google Chrome Experiments website, and thus developed with Javascript only while the code is open-source. Note: It seems to use a lot of processor power.

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Image taken from Toxi at Flickr.