Mail Visualization
Java Python
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Visualizing Emails


The European Data Retention Directive requires email providers to store communications data for 6 to 24 months. This data can be used to construct and explore social networks to deduct information such as organization structure in groups. Although it is often criticized for intruding our privacy the topic is still very abstract.

This is an experiment of displaying how visualized data looks like and what potentially can be deduced from it.

On the Data

The data included as file mypmails.json is an anonymized set of emails I received and sent during working in a lab from 2008-2011. I chose this data set because it displays usual worklife email behavior (relatively little lists etc.).

The data is extracted from maildirs using the python scripts. walks a mail directory (set in the source as /home/mihi/Mail) and prints json formatted data.

Visualizing the Data

The data visualization part is done using Processing. The sketches are in the processing/ folder - including a copy of the framework. A video showing the result is available on Vimeo: