"Big Data powers the modern world. With tools like FitBit tracking our every step and supercomputers like IBMs Watson helping Memorial Sloan Kettering trent cancer patients, we literally live it. Between our social media profiles, browsing histories, discount programs, and new tools like Nest controlling our energy use, there s no escape.
Its true humans have always generated, collected and analyzed data, from knowing which time of years to fish the rivers to realizing they should probably stop eating so much takeout. Whats different today in the power of everyday devices to gather and analyse that data in real time. Unless one pays with cash, now its possible, with very little effort, to go from saying ï eat a lot of takeout"to knowing with certainty ï spend 23 precent of my weekly paycheck on takeout food"
Big companies are collecting and using this information too. This can be good or bad. Maybe we start making better choises about the food we eat and the money we spend. Or maybe an insurance company decides to increase its rate or even terminate a policy because it projects we'll have diabetes in 18 months.
We believe many folks want to learn more about these issues but are turned off by often dense and jargon laden coverage