I use computer science to test social science. Social science theory predicts behaviors. Social media provide behaviors of millions of people, businesses and organizations. Computer science allows us to scale content analysis to big data proportions.
I am one of the few social scientists in communication that can not only understand advanced computer science methods, but actually apply them. There is no reason we can’t build predictive models to solve real-world problems. As communication scholars, we can take millions of messages and process them to detect when events occur, or when people are acting a certain way. We then can make predictions on their behaviors based on this knowledge.
To that end, here is a recent presentation on the varying ways in which I have looked at millions of messages on Twitter. The majority of these studies can be found in the Publications section of this website.