How Twitter Knows What You Like

By Alexis C. Madrigal

Technology Review has a fascinating short post about a talk by Twitter's analytics lead, Kevin Weil. He's the guy in charge of looking for patterns in the 12 terabytes worth of Tweets generated each day. My favorite tidbit was this correlation:

Twitter has discovered that it can make good guesses about the topics a user is interested in by looking at the users he follows that don't follow him back.

It is those people you are willing to follow without reciprocation that define your taste. There's something poetic in that, even if I can't quite figure out what.

Or maybe Shaquille O'Neil, The New York Times, and Justin Bieber have a lot of followers but few friends. Perhaps the star accounts become key evidence for Twitter that you're a newshound 14-year old girl or an old man who loves bad music.
 
Read the full story at Technology Review.

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2010/09/how-twitter-knows-what-you-like/63763/