Visualisation of Online Discussion Forums

  • Mitja Trampuš
  • Sinan Sen
  • Nenad Stojanović
  • Marko Grobelnik


This chapter presents a novel visual approach to data interpretation in online discussion forums. Due to information overload in these forums, it is very difficult to get the right information at the right time, especially when the information is summary in its nature and spread across a big number of posts. The authors propose a tool that enables any visitor of a discussion forum to easily visualise its contents and thus gain an overview of its structure and discussion trends. The tool, which has been deployed on three politically themed pilot forums, also enables the user to receive proactive notifications about interesting topics being posted on the forum. The work presented was performed in the scope of EU co-funded project VIDI and contributed visibly to a better participation of citizens in (local) political life.


Discussion Forum Latent Semantic Indexing Notification System Cosine Distance Complex Event Processing 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



The work presented in this chapter has been mainly performed in the scope of the EU co-funded project VIDI ‘VIsualising the impact of the legislation by analysing public DIscussions using statistical means’, 2-year project from the eParticipation Work Programme (2009–2011). The system can be tested live on any of our pilot forums (developed in the scope of the project); a list is available at


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mitja Trampuš
    • 1
  • Sinan Sen
    • 2
  • Nenad Stojanović
    • 2
  • Marko Grobelnik
    • 1
  1. 1.Jožef Stefan InstituteLjubljanaSlovenia
  2. 2.FZI Research Center for Information TechnologyKarlsruheGermany

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