News & events


Understanding the tools and technologies for working with online social media data

08 September 2016
12:30 - 13:30

Dr Alastair van Heerden
Human and Social Development (HSD), HSRC

Date:    8 September 2016

Time:    12:30 – 13:30

  VCC in Pretoria, Cape Town and Durban

The web is full of both structured and unstructured data, some of which holds interests for social scientists. Unfortunately the skills required to engage with these data are often scare. During this two hour seminar series Dr Alastair van Heerden will first provide an overview of how data on the web is stored, queried and retrieved. He will touch on a broad range of fundamental topics and principals such as HTTP Methods, Representational State Transfer, Application Programming Interfaces (APIs), data formats such as CSV, XML and JSON and relational vs document vs real-time databases.

After providing this theoretical perspective the audience will be invited to test drive their new found knowledge by following along through a practical exercise aimed at retrieving data from a Social Media site. Participants wishing to take part in the practical exercise should bring their laptops and have the chrome browser installed.

Kindly RSVP by 6 September 2016

Cape Town : HSRC, 12th Floor, Plein Park Building (Opposite Revenue Office), Plein Street, Cape Town. Contact Carmen August ,Tel (021) 4668004, Fax (021) 461 0299 or e-mail:

Durban :  The Atrium, 5th Floor, 430 Peter Mokaba Ridge, Berea, 4001 , Contact Ridhwaan Khan, Tel (031) 242 5400, cell: 083 788 2786 or , or Hlengiwe Zulu at e-mail

Pretoria : HSRC Video Conference, 1st floor HSRC Library Human Sciences Research Council, 134 Pretorius Street, Pretoria. Arlene Grossberg, Tel: (012) 302 2811, e-mail:;

Sweetwaters: Old Bus Depot, Mbubu Road, Sweetwaters, VCC Room; Thembokuhle Mkhwanazi or Tel: 033 324 5000