How do I get started building a bot? What tool do you recommend? These are two of the most common questions we get, and for a long time, we didn’t have a solid answer. What Quartz has built until now has been completely custom, which is both a great luxury, and also hands-down the most obnoxious answer we could offer to those questions. So here’s our attempt at a better answer: We spent the past couple of months testing dozens of bot-building tools. (Our eyes are still twitching.)
On the Echo, nobody knows you’re a dog. Yesterday afternoon, I enabled Amazon’s “drop-in” feature, allowing my mom to connect to the Echo that sits on our kitchen counter. Unlike a call that I’d have to answer, “drop in” automatically connects the two devices. She hears what’s going on in my kitchen; we hear her living room. When she dropped in for the first time yesterday, I wasn’t home.
In the spirit of confessionals, I’ll offer this one: In any given week, I probably spend more time chatting with bots than I do humans. (At least on Facebook Messenger.) As we consider where to take our bots, we here in the Bot Studio are working hard to better understand the bounds and opportunities of the major platforms, as well as the people who use them, in what context, and why they’d prefer chatting with a bot over some other activity.
Muck Rack makes it simple to find people, tweets, or articles that mention any name, keyword, company, hashtag etc. We've compiled this guide to help you make the most of your search.
Selecting a term
Start searching tweets, articles from media outlets, articles mentioned in tweets, journalists'
names, titles and bios with some suggested searches:
Companies or Topics (e.g. iPhone, Microsoft)
Phrases (e.g. "cloud computing") — use quotes to keep the terms together
Twitter handles (e.g. @username) — returns those who have mentioned or replied to
Names (e.g. "David Pogue")
Hashtags (e.g. #sxsw, #london2012)
Bio details (e.g. vegan, Olympics, father)
Muck Rack's Advanced Search allows for many boolean operators.
Find results that mention multiple specified terms, use AND or
+. For example, ensure each result contains both Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg by
searching Obama AND Romney or Obama + Romney.
Use the operators OR or , to broaden your search when you'd like either of
multiple terms to appear in results. (This is the default behavior of our search when no operators
are used.) For example, search for democrat OR republican to find results that refer to
Democrats and/or Republicans.
Use NOT or - to subtract results from your search. For
example, searching Disney will yield results about the Walt Disney Company as well as Walt Disney
World Resort. To exclude mentions of Disney World, search for Disney -World or Disney
When using one of these operators with a phrase, enclose it in quotation marks. For example, you can
find results about smartphones excluding Apple's iPhone 4S by searching smartphone -"iPhone
Exact case matching or punctuation
If you're searching for a brand name or keyword that relies on specific punctuation marks or capitalization, you can
find results that match your exact query by adding matchcase: before the keyword you're searching for, like matchcase:E*TRADE .
Use parentheses to separate multiple
boolean phrases. For example, to find journalists talking about having fun in Disney World or
Disneyland, search for ("disney world" OR disneyland) AND fun.
An asterisk can be used to search for any variation of a root word truncated by the asterisk. For example, searching for admin* will return results for administrator, administration, administer, administered, etc.
A near operator is an AND operator where you can control the distance between the words. You can vary the distance the near operation uses by adding a forward slash and number (between 0-99) such as strawberries NEAR/10 "whipped cream", which means the strawberries must exist within 10 words of "whipped cream".