Section 2 – Preparing the Toolbox and Framework


Lesson 3 – Installing InfraNodus and Gephi

In this course we will use Gephi and InfraNodus software. If you are already familiar with both, skip this section and go straight to the practical use cases, otherwise, check out the sections below to learn how to install them to your computer.

You can of course use other software – the basic principles stay the same. However, you will still need an easy-to-use tool that can create graphs (and export the data in XML-like format) – something that InfraNodus is quite good at, as well as a graph visualization and analysis software (something Gephi does very well).

 

InfraNodus Installation Instructions

InfraNodus is a rapid prototype text-to-graph tool. It can help you create any sort of graphs very quickly just using text and then export it for further visualization and analysis with Gephi or any other graph visualization software.

In order to use InfraNodus you can either install it on your computer (that requires some technical skills – you need to set up Node.Js on your computer). You can download the free open-source latest version of InfraNodus from GitHub – and follow the installation instructions on InfraNodus’ Wiki.

Alternatively, you can use a cloud-based version of InfraNodus – http://infranodus.com – which is probably easier. You can set up your account on http://noduslabs.com/infranodus/ in just 3 minutes.

Once you open InfraNodus and log in, you will see something like this:

infranodus-screenshot

Gephi Installation Instructions

Gephi is a popular network visualization and analysis tool. It is a free and open-source program running on Java, which can be installed on Windows, Mac, and Linux. Gephi also has a modular toolkit available, which means you could integrate its functionalities with any of your own server applications.

We will be using it to create beautiful visualizations of networks and analyze them. Gephi has almost all the functionalities that you need and once you spend a few minutes figuring it out, it’s very easy to use (you don’t have to be a technical user to master it).

To install Gephi, download it from gephi.org/download/ (the latest version at the time when this course was created is 0.9.1 but if it turns out to be unstable, you can also get versions 0.8.0 or 0.7.0 from Gephi’s versions list as those tend to be less buggy.

To run Gephi on your computer, you will need the latest version of Java (Gephi’s runtime environment) installed on your computer. Probably it’s already there. If not, download it from oracle’s website.

Once you install Gephi, you will open the app and see something like this:

gephi-mac-os-x-screenshot

In the next section we will explain how to use it, for now the good thing is that it works.

In case you have any problems installing Gephi, you might have a problem either with your Java version or with your memory. In both cases, refer to Gephi installation troubleshooting instructions.