We present the PICTOR browser, a visualization designed to facilitate the analysis of quotations about userspecified topics in large collections of news text. PICTOR focuses on quotations because they are a major vehicle of communication in the news genre. It extracts quotes from articles that match a user’s text query, and groups these quotes into “threads” that illustrate the development of subtopics over time. It allows users to rapidly explore the space of relevant quotes by viewing their content and speakers, to examine the contexts in which quotes
appear, and to tune how threads are constructed. We offer two case studies demonstrating how PICTOR can support a richer understanding of news events.

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