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Rob Beer, Published January 05 2013

Bison fan shows Twitter traffic during the game

MADISON, Wis. - University of Wisconsin graduate student Chris Cantey mapped geo-tagged tweets that included North Dakota State-related words during Saturday's Football Championship Subdivision national championship game.

But just 1 percent of them.

That 1 percent appears as dots on a map. Cantey said 1.5 million posts on Twitter, the limited-word social media site, included the words NDSU or Bison during the game.

Cantey said this project, which he published on Twitter shortly after the game, is part of his thesis research at Wisconsin. It uses data from Twitter's API.

Called static cartography, Cantey plotted 519 locations - or the 1 percent made available of the 1.5 million tweets - to see if "Bison Nation" was truly invading Texas.

The hotspots were the Fargo-Moorhead and the Twin Cities areas.

"There could be some spots along the I-94 corridor that are just too populated you can't see them," Cantey said.

Cantey said he watched Saturday's game on ESPN2 and noticed a few people from his native Ellendale area.

"I'm a die-hard fan from my earliest days," he said. "I remember Phil Hansen."


Forum Online Editor Rob Beer can be reached at (701) 241-5506