Jean-Anne Fitzpatrick



University of California at Berkeley:  Master's Project

I attended the University of California at Berkeley's School of Information (formerly School of Information Management and Systems, or SIMS) and obtained my Master's degree in 2002. This program typically involves a substantial group project rather than a thesis.

My Master's project focused on visualization of trends in web-based news. In particular, we were interested in finding ways to visualize changes over time and differences between geographic regions.

The project team (consisting of myself and two classmates) performed all phases of the work, including formative research and concept development, user interface design and evaluation, and front- and back-end development of the prototype system. Development work included integration of a Java information retrieval system (Lucene), MySQL database, and web-based (JSP/Java) user interface.

The prototype system, BreakingStory, provided search capabilities over a corpus of international news web site front pages (collected for a period of over 18 months), and presented the results in graphical, tabular, and text formats. Using both temporal and geographic metadata, BreakingStory provided filtering and aggregation by both facets simultaneously.


For an overview of the system, please refer to this short paper.

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