20 Awesome Websites For Collecting Big Data

20 Awesome Websites For Collecting Big Data

Big data is a big deal. That’s why so many companies are working to deploy analytical systems that can track and collect the data they need — if they haven’t already. With it, you can learn a lot about customer behaviors, habits and tendencies, your own products and services, and much more. It can also provide insights into the future, like how to tailor specific marketing campaigns or what new products you should launch.

From 2011 to 2013, more data had been created in those two years than in the entire history of the human race. And that was years ago. It’s exploded even more since then. By the year 2020, there will be an estimated 44 trillion gigabytes.

As valuable as this information can be, not everyone has the capacity to collect and access — or even analyze — this much information. What’s the solution if you don’t have access to a system that can facilitate the data for you? What if you don’t have access to data banks or databases? Where can you go? Where can small businesses get the information they need?

Believe it or not, there are many websites on the internet you can use to reference and collect ...


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Why Cloud Adoption Will Continue to Grow in 2017

Why Cloud Adoption Will Continue to Grow in 2017

Cloud computing has had a pretty slow start over the past few years,. It makes sense, because there are many security and privacy concerns weighing down the technology.

It looks like that sentiment is finally waning, however. Cloud adoption in 2016 was higher than it’s ever been, and that trend continues as we move into 2017.  Most recently, worldwide software company Epicor acquired the cloud-based enterprise content management company, docSTAR, providing just one example of a trend we can expect to see more of throughout the coming year.

Surveys indicate that 17% of enterprises have over 1,000 virtual machines deployed in the cloud, a big increase from 13% in 2015. Furthermore, 95% of survey respondents indicated they utilized cloud services.

As cloud interest — and adoption — rises, enterprises are forced to jump on the bandwagon or risk getting left behind. There are roadblocks and obstacles you may encounter along the way, but more importantly, the benefits far outweigh the risks.

Embracing the Cloud

Cloud solutions now provide benefits like rapid elasticity, proper scaling support, broad network access and on-demand self-service software. And these are quickly becoming necessary in today’s hyper-efficient, technology-oriented world.

This, coupled with the fact that local hardware is aging fast, will push ...


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Big Data Highlights Broad Human Behavior Patterns in New Study

Big Data Highlights Broad Human Behavior Patterns in New Study

Researchers from the ThinkBIG project at the University of Bristol have concluded that, by looking at patterns in huge data sets, including newspaper content, individual Twitter feeds and Wikipedia habits, it's possible to spot things about collective society that might not be detected otherwise.

It’s a remarkable revelation, made possible by the project’s leader, Nello Cristianini — a Professor of Artificial Intelligence — and other scientists. During the study, they used big data to study the digital habits of large numbers of people to draw conclusions about how people behave, and to find notable similarities across demographics.

Trends in Newspaper Content Across Time

Researchers carried out two different studies before asserting their recent findings. The first involved looking at newspapers from the United States and the United Kingdom, published between 1836 and 1922. They found that the ways in which people devoted themselves to either work or pleasurable activities was largely dependent on seasons and weather patterns. As you might imagine, the word "picnic" showed up particularly often in newspapers during the summertime.

However, the printed content didn't just mention how people spent their days. It also showed peak trends in mentions of fruits and other foods, which affected the diets of individuals from ...


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Can Big Data Make You a Better Investor?

Can Big Data Make You a Better Investor?

Investors both big and small tend to go over a company’s financials before making the decisions to buy or sell. These fundamentals are a tried and true method to help guarantee gains, yet the rise of big data offers a promising new way for investors to find returns. Mining troves of data with computer programs in hopes of finding meaningful patterns and information could be the future of investing, according to some experts.

At the very least, big data can help call out fraudulent companies before they sucker in more investors.

Financial scientists at Deutsche Bank have developed a model to find worrying signs at publicly traded companies. By going through data filed with the Securities and Exchanges Commission, the banks believe they can determine which companies are using questionable — or even fraudulent — accounting methods.

Inside the Numbers

According to The Financial Times, Deutsche Bank uses a version of “Benford’s Law” to find possible problems. Developed back in 1938 by physicist Frank Benford, this theory finds that in any large, random set of data, most numbers begins with the digit 1, followed by two, and then down to the least likely to appear, nine. Benford’s Law can help find red flags in ...


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How Industrial Markets Lose Out on the Connected Culture

How Industrial Markets Lose Out on the Connected Culture

New technologies have made it exponentially easier in recent years to stay connected, whether it's to family and friends through Facebook or your favorite celebrities via Instagram or Twitter.

Living in a connected culture also means being connected with brands, for better or worse. All of the devices you're connected to, including your computer, tablet and smartphone, have the ability to track things about you, from personal preferences to your physical location.

It can be somewhat unnerving to know that brands have access to this information about you, but it does have its benefits. For example, many people like seeing ads online that cater to their interests rather than those that are completely irrelevant.

All of this available information – big data – is useful when it comes to consumer marketing, but it's also forcing industrial markets to fall behind the curve.

Here is a look at big data, what it's used for and ways industrial markets can begin to harness it to benefit their businesses.

A Refresher On Big Data

Big data is all of the information that's collected about individuals across a wide variety of channels. It could include everything from Internet search history, location data pulled from your smartphone, purchase data from your ...


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How Autonomous Cars Will Make Big Data Even Bigger

How Autonomous Cars Will Make Big Data Even Bigger

Believe it or not, it's big data that actually controls self-driving vehicles. Sound a bit far-fetched to you?

Autonomous vehicles — like Google's self-driving cars that are so often talked about — use a variety of traffic and environmental data to constantly analyze their position in the world. The cars are outfitted with a myriad of sensors to monitor things like their positional awareness, proximity to pedestrians or other drivers, traffic guides and signals and much more. At any given time, they are tirelessly analyzing their local surroundings, looking for telltale signs that the brakes need to be applied or that they need to prepare for deceleration.

Want to know the most amazing thing about all this? These autonomous vehicles drive much better than any human ever could or will. Self-driving vehicles never get tired or exhausted, never lose focus and always make the right decisions in a split second. Whereas humans, on the other hand, are certainly what makes the roadways less safe.

According to Google, with a record of over 1.8 million miles logged of autonomous and manual driving in their self-driving vehicles, there have only been 13 minor fender-benders recorded. More importantly, all of those accidents were the direct result ...


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How Does Net Neutrality Affect Cyber Security?

How Does Net Neutrality Affect Cyber Security?

A few years ago, the Federal government decided that Americans had the right to choose which company delivered their electricity. Unfortunately, this decision received the misleading title of “energy deregulation” — it’s exactly the opposite. It empowered people to choose an electricity provider other than the incumbent utility company that supplied power to their home, such as New York’s NYSEG or Pennsylvania’s PPL.

To put this decision another way, the “deregulation” helped capitalism work properly in a market that had previously been dominated by monopolies.

Today, American consumers are facing a similar battle — whether they know it or not. 2015 was the year the FCC decided to step up to the plate on behalf of average Americans and put forth sweeping new regulations with Internet customers’ best interests in mind. The movement is called Net Neutrality, and it’s going to fundamentally change the Internet for the better.

Here’s how.

What Is Net Neutrality?

Telecommunications incumbents like Comcast, Verizon and Time Warner have a vested interest in defeating Net Neutrality, so it surprised no one that they came out swinging. Under the FCC’s new rules, carriers would be bound by basic rules of conduct — rules that these companies would already be failing miserably by ...


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3 Steps to Prevent You From Being Hacked

3 Steps to Prevent You From Being Hacked

Data leaks and high-profile hacks are happening daily, and in many cases they are inevitable. Worse yet, it seems like it’s happening to everyone, even big companies like T-Mobile, Ashley Madison and the IRS. It’s difficult to be positive when even the U.S. government and related agencies aren’t safe.

That doesn't mean you shouldn't be doing everything you can to not only prevent these breaches, but also protect your sensitive data from third parties. You have a duty to your customers, clients and employees to keep their personal information stored safely and securely.

Sadly, a large majority of breaches happen because those being attacked did not take the appropriate precautionary measures. We're going to take a look at some advanced tips for preventing data leaks and hacks against your website or company.

Step 1: Secure Email Accounts

Believe it or not, the two most common ways data is leaked is via email or Web access, generally from a browser of some kind. As such, these two areas should be a primary focus when it comes to data leak prevention. A lot of times, a data breach happens as a means to collect personal information, which may not even be used by hackers until a ...


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How Big Data Can Help Predict Power Outages

How Big Data Can Help Predict Power Outages

Big data is becoming more useful every day as we learn to collect an abundance of information and analyze it more efficiently. There are things we can learn from data collection that we would never have expected years ago. One of the most recent uses for big data is to help predict power outages in the event of a disaster.

It’s not about whether or not power outages will happen. In many cases, they are inevitable and customers understand as much, especially during big storms like Hurricane Sandy, where affected areas were left without power for weeks. What it’s actually about is the timely restoration of said power.

How Big Data Can Accelerate Power Outage Recovery

When Hurricane Sandy hit in 2012, it devastated the northeastern part of the U.S. and left millions without power for days, some for weeks.

Worse yet, it revealed several vulnerabilities in the power systems used in affected regions and offered a real-world example of how slow these power companies can take to react after a disaster. The Kinetic Analysis Corp. conducted a pilot study in 2006 for the Long Island Power Authority, which pointed out some of the vulnerabilities and inconsistencies in its system. One thing the study ...


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How Big Data Has Encouraged a New Memory Technology

How Big Data Has Encouraged a New Memory Technology

The emergence of big data has generated a need for more advanced tech, at least when it comes to memory and data storage. Micron — a renowned chipmaker — has answered the call by announcing their new persistent memory technology. It’s an 8GB DDR4 NVDIMM that improves a great deal of performance stats in the way of big data storage, including bandwidth, latency, memory capacity and overall operating cost.

Many companies are now offering cloud storage and big data platforms designed to aggregate and protect sensitive and valuable data. However, no one has been able to tackle some of the biggest challenges that arise when storing said data. To understand, we first need to take a look at how computers handle data storage.

Dynamic Random Access Memory vs. Physical Storage

Dynamic Random Access Memory, or DRAM for short, is what computers use to temporarily store information. It is generally located near the processor and is often used for running processes. The problem with storing information — or data — in the DRAM is that as soon as the power is shut off, the memory is wiped clean. For scheduled power sessions, this isn’t an issue. However, it can be a big problem in ...


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