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Reading Big Data

Wednesday, 25 September, 2013

Currently reading Big Data: A Revolution That Will Transform How We Live, Work and Think by Viktor Mayer-Schönberger and Kenneth Cukier. Definition: “Big Data refers to things one can do at a large scale that cannot be done at a smaller one, to extract new insights or create new forms of value, in ways that change markets, organizations, the relationship between citizens and government, and more.” In short, the two authors say, Big Data is about predictions. But Big Data is not new as Tim Smith explains in this depiction of CERN’s involvement with the concept over the past five decades.

And what, if anything, has that got to do with Google and its quest for life in the face of death that we posted about here on Monday? Well, a good place to start is Google Flu Trends. Viktor Mayer-Schönberger and Kenneth Cukier begin their book as follows: “In 2009 a new flu virus was discovered… As it happened, a few weeks before the H1NI virus made headlines, engineers at the Internet giant Google published a remarkable paper in the scientific journal Nature.”

Mining Big Data in the Alpine region of South Tyrol is our topic here on Friday.


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