Social Media Text Processing and Semantic Analysis for Smart Cities

09/11/2017
by   João Filipe Figueiredo Pereira, et al.
0

With the rise of Social Media, people obtain and share information almost instantly on a 24/7 basis. Many research areas have tried to gain valuable insights from these large volumes of freely available user generated content. With the goal of extracting knowledge from social media streams that might be useful in the context of intelligent transportation systems and smart cities, we designed and developed a framework that provides functionalities for parallel collection of geo-located tweets from multiple pre-defined bounding boxes (cities or regions), including filtering of non-complying tweets, text pre-processing for Portuguese and English language, topic modeling, and transportation-specific text classifiers, as well as, aggregation and data visualization. We performed an exploratory data analysis of geo-located tweets in 5 different cities: Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, New York City, London and Melbourne, comprising a total of more than 43 million tweets in a period of 3 months. Furthermore, we performed a large scale topic modelling comparison between Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. Interestingly, most of the topics are shared between both cities which despite being in the same country are considered very different regarding population, economy and lifestyle. We take advantage of recent developments in word embeddings and train such representations from the collections of geo-located tweets. We then use a combination of bag-of-embeddings and traditional bag-of-words to train travel-related classifiers in both Portuguese and English to filter travel-related content from non-related. We created specific gold-standard data to perform empirical evaluation of the resulting classifiers. Results are in line with research work in other application areas by showing the robustness of using word embeddings to learn word similarities that bag-of-words is not able to capture.

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