We’ve heard that Wikipedia might be able to predict the Vice President, but what about the honcho himself? Using a combination of Python, R, and Wikipedia version histroy, I’ve delved inside the hivemind and emerged with some graphs that might have the answer. So without further ado, let’s try and predict the upcoming U.S. election.
Wikipedia didn’t come to be until after the 2000 elections, so we can’t glean a lot of good data here. And although Bush has basically always outpaced Gore in editor interest, presidents seem to always get a lot more attention after they’re elected as you’ll see.
Kerry and Bush battled on the encyclopedia in a close Roman-chariot-esque way in the year leading up to November 2004. But after a summer-surge by Kerry, the Bush pundits (or possibly even Bush himself) took to the keyboard and found glory.
Obama editors trampled McCain writers in most of the year before the 2008 election, yet in dramatic fashion the silver-coiffed eagle made a late Oct-Nov-December push. Still the bulk of the pre-elections editing seems to have made its point.
Here we really see the effects that the new-white-house-smell has on Wikignomes. Yet once that odour becomes ever less fresh, it gives way to Mitt Romney clearly pipping Obama at the moment to the virtual post. Ominous? You decide.
And of course the code is all open source and you can get it on github. The next steps? Look at templates usages over time?