Mapping Forums/message boards

Aug 9, 2012 at 2:33 PM

Dear all,

thanks again for NodeXL, it is great! I have to map several forums/message boards for a scientific project. Is there a way, e.g. a crawler for NodeXL, to do this automatically? I have to map users and threads/affiliation networks.

Thanks a lot, best wishes from Germany.


Aug 9, 2012 at 5:07 PM


NodeXL has built-in crawlers, which we call importers, for Twitter, YouTube and Flickr, and there are third-party importers for Facebook, Exchange, and a few others.  There is no importer for forums and message boards that I know of, however.

Perhaps you can find a crawler that fits your needs and you can get the crawler to provide its data in one of the formats that NodeXL understands.  NodeXL can import data from GraphML files, Pajek files, UCINET files, and other Excel workbooks.

Another option is for you or someone involved with your project to create a custom importer, which can easily be "plugged into" NodeXL.  This involves writing a program in a .NET language such as VB.NET or C#.  Instructions for doing this are at

-- Tony

Aug 9, 2012 at 6:00 PM

We did have a project that is not actively in development now called ThreadMill.


ThreadMill collects messages from a message table and generates summary statistics and multiple network graphs based on who replies to whom.

ThreadMill may address some of your needs but does require additional development to provide a seamless solution for you.

I hope that helps!



Aug 10, 2012 at 10:31 AM

Thanks a lot for the fast answers! I will check ThreadMill. VOSON isn't a possibility, is it? My account is still pending approval. I will have look, when I have access.

Aug 11, 2012 at 4:03 AM

VOSON ( is a web crawler that has a NodeXL interface, but it does not recognize that some web pages contain message threads.