AFP PODCAST: Forecasting Revolutions


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Is it possible  to feed 100M news articles from around the world stretching back 25 years into a supercomputer to predict the future?

Kalev H. Leetaru, former Assistant Director for Text and Digital Media Analytics at the University of Illinois used software that picked out every person mentioned in the news, every company, organization, every terror group, every location, every action and all the connections between them, and created a gigantic network of 10B people, places, things and actions connected by 100T relationships between them.


Leetaru’s research concluded that the tone of articles, their optimism or pessimism, can forecast future events. After claiming that his system generated better results than the U.S. intelligence apparatus, he was approached by them, as uncovered in this fascinating interview (41:59).

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Dave Gahary, a former submariner in the U.S. Navy, is the host of AFP’s ‘Underground Interview’ series.

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