[VIDEO] Working with ITONICS Signals

With the help of our Natural Language Processing (NLP) engine, you can automatically detect new Signals as well as monitor online news, scientific publications, and patents for developments in your interest fields. This powerful solution allows you to save time on the research phase of your innovation process.

To see an overview of ITONICS Signals, watch the video below or continue reading the article.

About the Signals feed

Every Element in the Explorer contains the Signals feed. The feed accesses information from our continuously growing data lake that is compiled by our Signals engine. The feed is generated using the textual information (title, summary, description) of the Element itself.

To see the Signals feed, go to an Element’s detail page and select the Signals tab located below the pearl chain.


The list of tailored Signals will display on the same page below. 

What can you see on the Signal tile?


  • Information about the Signal type (News, Publication, RSS, or Patent)
  • Date of publication by the external source
  • Source that Signal is coming from (website)
  • Country of publication
  • Title of the Signal
  • A preview of the content in the Signal
  • Read More to see more of the document content
  • List of tags
  • List of companies mentioned on the Signal
  • In the meat ball menu: 

After clicking on the Signal title, the document will open in a new browser tab.

Top Companies

In addition to relevant news, patents, RSS feeds and scientific publications, ITONICS also displays companies that have been mentioned most frequently on the displayed Signals in a dedicated widget.

You can use this functionality to identify interesting players, competitors, or potential partners in the market that seem to be investing in a certain technology. The widget allows you to quickly filter the feed by a company and offers the possibility to create an Element using the Crunchbase integration.

Top_Companies_-_Widget.pngFor detailed information about the widget, have a look at this article.

How to filter Signals

Although a comprehensive list of Signals allows you to analyze the situation from many angles, the option to Filter by specific criteria can help you focus on your needs.


You can filter the list of Signals by certain criteria:

  • Use the Search field to type a specific keyword or phrase
  • Select dates (From and To) to focus on the Signals that were published during a specific time (for example, you can choose those that were published just this month)
  • Select a Source to define specific websites you want to focus on
  • Pick a Company that needs to be mentioned on the Signals
  • Select a Country of publication
  • Either Show All or Show Flagged Only
  • Sort Signals, for example by their Relevancy

For the Source, Company and Country filters, you can use the Search field in that dropdown to search the options. Once you have found what you are looking for, select entries by checking the boxes for all the options you want to see results for.

The selection will automatically appear. Click Reset Filters to see all results again.

Advanced Search

You can use more complex operators within the search input to precisely filter down the results. Some examples:

  1. Use double quotation marks to make sure the results contain the exact phrase: “machine learning”
  2. The plus sign (+) between two words or phrases will ensure that both are found in the results: “machine learning” + “neural network”
  3. The pipe sign (|) between two words or phrases acts as a logical OR operator: “machine learning” | “artificial intelligence”
  4. The minus sign (-) to exclude words or phrases: -course
  5. Use parentheses to group logical units
  6. Use * as a wildcard to replace any number of characters at the end of a word: “neural network*” will also return results with neural networks or neural networking

These operators can also be combined, for example to find all documents that include the specific phrases “machine learning” or “artificial intelligence” as well as “neural network” but do not contain any mention of courses:

(“machine learning” | “artificial intelligence”) + “neural network*” + -course


To recap, here is the full list of available operators:




Logical AND


Logical OR (default if nothing is specific between words or phrases)






exact match



How to get good Signals results on your Element

While the results of the Signals feed are usually relevant for technological topics, accuracy and relevance can be an issue for societal trends. Here are tips on how to improve the quality of the feed:


  • Add text that is specific to the underlying topic, for instance machine learning. The better you describe machine learning, the more relevant Signals will show.
  • Balance the number of keywords: 
    • 1-3 most relevant keywords in the title
    • 10-25 keywords in the abstract
    • Add tags to your element


  • Less can be more. Adding a lot of text to the summary, can be counterproductive and “water down” the search. This can lead to worse quality terms being used for the search.
  • Do not add information that is not topic-specific For instance, adding that you are looking for “companies” will not give you better company results.
  • Do not mix languages as this might confuse the search.
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