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news_dots_slate.jpg
News Dots [slate.com] is one of Slate Labs "experiments in multimedia journalism". The interactive, online tool represents the most recent topics in the news as a social network. Subjects, shown as circles, are connected to one another if they appear together in at least 2 stories. The size of each dot is proportional to the total number of times the subject is mentioned, while its color reveals it stands for a person, a place, a group or a company. Dots are clickable to reveal the particular stories that mention the according topic, and all other topics it connects to in the network.

Interestingly, the dataset contains about 500 daily news stories that are automatically tagged by people, places, companies or topics by an open service called Open Calais, an automated generator of rich semantic metadata in RDF format.