The investment arms of the CIA and Google are both backing a company that monitors the web in real time — and says it uses that information to predict the future.
The company is called Recorded Future, and it scours tens of thousands of websites, blogs and Twitter accounts to find the relationships between people, organizations, actions and incidents — both present and still-to-come. In a white paper, the company says its temporal analytics engine "goes beyond search" by "looking at the 'invisible links' between documents that talk about the same, or related, entities and events."
The idea is to figure out for each incident who was involved, where it happened and when it might go down. Recorded Future then plots that chatter, showing online "momentum" for any given event.
Again, we're not likely to get bulk data that will enable us to do this kind of analysis.
The videos I link to in that thread are instructive, albeit also creepy. (Perhaps whoever scored the music track has a sense of irony, or perhaps that's the company's self-image. It's often hard to say).