Sunday, January 15, 2012

Facebook And Big Data

Česky: Logo Facebooku English: Facebook logo E...Image via WikipediaBig Data: Big News

ReadWriteWeb: Why Facebook's Data Sharing Matters
Facebook has cut a deal with political website Politico that allows the independent site machine-access to Facebook users' messages, both public and private, when a Republican Presidential candidate is mentioned by name. The data is being collected and analyzed for sentiment by Facebook's data team, then delivered to Politico to serve as the basis of data-driven political analysis and journalism. ..... Facebook could be the biggest, most dynamic census of human opinion and interaction in history. ....... Back in the middle of the last century, when US Census data and housing mortgage loan data were both made available for computer analysis and cross referencing for the first time, early data scientists were able to prove a pattern of racial discrimination by banks against people of color who wanted to buy houses in certain neighborhoods. The data illuminated the problem and made it undeniable, thus leading to legislation to prohibit such discrimination...... the relationship between data and knowledge generally in the emerging data-rich world....... David Weinberger .. "It's not simply that there are too many brickfacts [datapoints] and not enough edifice-theories. Rather, the creation of data galaxies has led us to science that sometimes is too rich and complex for reduction into theories. As science has gotten too big to know, we've adopted different ideas about what it means to know at all." ...... The world's largest social network, rich with far more signal than any of us could wrap our heads around, could help illuminate emergent qualities of the human experience that are only visible on the network level.
Google machine-reads all your Gmail emails. That is how it serves ads against them. I don't think that is a breach of privacy. I can imagine Facebook similarly machine-reading your private Facebook messages and updates. As long as individuals are not identified, that collective data is fair game. It has the potential to do tremendous good.

This also tells me Google is not the only major tech company trying to get on the Big Data train. Facebook is also well-positioned.

Curiously Yahoo's new CEO also has said he will take Yahoo into the Big Data domain. He got the vocabulary right. I hope he can deliver. Yahoo also sits on some pretty Big Data.
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