Smart Cities, Big Data, and Privacy


Jane Wakefield at the BBC reports that Big Data is being used in previously unthought-of ways. For example, the Advanced Computing Center at the University of Vermont is measuring both happiness and health of 180,000 people in the U.S.  The Hedonometer project used 37 million geolocated tweets from people across the U.S. It found that […]

How the NSA Tackles Big Data

Over at GigaOM, Derrick Harris writes that more details have surfaced from NSA’s recently uncovered data-collection practices. The technological linchpin to everything the NSA is doing from a data-analysis perspective is Accumulo — an open-source database the agency built in order to store and analyze huge amounts of data. Adam Fuchs knows Accumulo well because […]

Indiana University Helps NASA Manage Big Data

Indiana University has contributed Big Data expertise and infrastructure to NASA’s Operation IceBridge, a decade-long polar ice monitoring project. For the past four years, IU Research Technologies, a cyberinfrastructure and service center affiliated with the Pervasive Technology Institute (PTI), has provided IT support for the Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets (CReSIS), a National […]

Arkansas Dodges the Big Data Trough of Disillusionment

With Gartner claiming that Big Data is heading for its fabled “Trough of Disillusionment,” it’s nice to run across a story that shows the technology being warmly embraced with positive outcomes forecasted. Such is the case with the Arkansas Department of Human Services (DHS), which will be using Big Data to modernize the delivery of […]

Google Targets Human Traffickers with Help from Big Data

Google has announced that it is taking steps to help combat human trafficking – a $32 billion illegal enterprise that exploits 20.9 million people worldwide, according to research from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. Google’s involvement includes a $3 million grant through its Global Impact Award program to three anti-trafficking organizations – […]

Video: The CIA's Grand Challenges with Big Data

In this video from the Structure: Data 2013 conference, Central Intelligence Agency CTO Ira “Gus” Hunt presents: The CIA’s Grand Challenges with Big Data. Sensors, agents and an Internet of Things are all producing data, all of the time. It would be a vast understatement to say that the CIA has experience in acquiring, handling […]

Obama Initiative Leverages Big Data to Explore the Brain

On Tuesday, April 2, President Obama announced a research initiative that has the ambitious goal of “revolutionizing our understanding of the human brain,” according to a White House press release. Know as BRAIN (Brain Research through Advancing Innovative Neurotechnologies), the initiative is being launched in FY 2014 with an initial budget of about $100 million, […]

Video: The Value of Large Scale Entity Analysis for National Security

In this video from the 2013 National HPCC Conference, Dr. Flavio Villanustre and Mary Galvin from LexisNexis present: The Value of Large Scale Entity Analysis for National Security. HPCC Systems from LexisNexis Risk Solutions works with clients in various industries to manage different types of risk by helping them derive insight from massive data sets. […]

Privacy and Big Data – What Goes Around Comes Around

In this feature, John Kirkley looks at how the threat of Big Data turning into Big Brother has its roots in Cold War. The year was 1968 and it was the height of the Cold War. Wanting to know more about how a totalitarian regime might exercise rigid control over its population, the U.S. government […]

Big Data: Big Brother or Nirvana?

Will Big Data help bring about the dystopian vision of George Orwell’s novel 1984 or be a boon for humanity, providing a range of benefits that were unthinkable until just recently? That’s the question Fred Gallagher, the general manager of Vectorwise tentatively addresses in a blog posted on Wired’s Innovation Insights. Gallagher pokes gingerly at […]