%GetTweet: A macro to collect and summarize tweets


I am always impressed by the innovative ways students use SAS.  If  you are not very familiar with SAS and happen to think students just use SAS to do their stat exercises for class, then you'll want to check out this students paper on how he uses SAS to collect and summarize tweets. His work won first prize at the ‘Wal-Mart and SAS Analytics Expo’ student poster competition.

I am Satish Garla and I am from India. I am currently doing my Masters in Information Systems at Oklahoma State University. During the last two years I had a chance to attend various SAS conferences and contribute to the SAS community via papers and posters. In this blog post I would like to share my work on a SAS macro (%gettweet) to collect and summarize tweets. This work was presented as a paper at SAS Global Forum 2011 and WUSS 2011.

Growth of Social Media has been phenomenal in the last 5 years. With the success of Twitter it has gotten bigger.  People talk about textual data being the next big treasure of information.  Since I am very much interested in Text Mining, I started exploring ways of collecting and analyzing textual data, particularly social media data. I first came across the idea of analyzing tweets from the blog ‘The SAS Dummy’ by Chris Hemedinger.

People talk about everything on twitter. But it is essential to get the data needed for your analysis. Then I started working on writing a SAS macro that can fetch customized tweets, cleans the tweets and generates a summary report. It works the same way as Twitter’s Advanced Search page.  As a student, you can use this macro to fetch tweets for a text mining exercise and impress your professor. I used this macro to fetch tweets on Wal-Mart and Sam’s club and did sentiment analysis to identify positive and negative comments. This work won the first prize in the ‘Wal-Mart and SAS Analytics Expo’ student poster competition.

I would say SAS Blogs are the right place to keep you updated on all the new things that can be done using SAS. You will also see a lot of new stuff at SAS conferences.  Every SAS conference has a Student Scholarship program. I attended SCSUG 2010 and WUSS 2011 as a student scholar. And for SAS Global Forum, you have an even bigger opportunity -SAS Student Ambassador.  To become a SAS Student Ambassador, you will have to write a paper or a poster and submit it to SAS Global Forum as well as apply to the Ambassador program .  My paper on gettweet macro was selected and I am one of the ten SAS Student Ambassadors for 2011. This means a lot for me as a student planning a career in analytics using SAS.

If you would like to learn more about this macro and analyzing social media content, here is a link to the paper: http://support.sas.com/resources/papers/proceedings11/324-2011.pdf


Thanks for sharing your work with us Satish! This is one of the many ways you can use SAS to study topics that represent one of the fastest growing sources of data.  If you are a professor interested in incorporating SAS into your coursework or a student interested in learning SAS, contact studentprograms@sas.com.


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Julie Petlick

SAS Student Programs Manager

Julie Petlick works in the SAS Education Division as part of the Global Academic Program team. Julie is responsible for the SAS Student Program and is dedicated to supporting teaching and learning.

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