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Sessions at SXSW Interactive 2012 about Data on Sunday 11th March

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  • Big Data: Powering the Race for the White House

    by Alex Lundry, Patrick Ruffini, Josh Hendler, Dan Siroker and Kristen Soltis

    Despite the advent of new media, campaigns for President still measure the electorate in pretty much the same way they did 40 years ago, through traditional polls to landline phones. That could all change this year. The hottest job in today’s Presidential campaigns is the Data Mining Scientist -- whose job it is to sort through terabytes of data and billions of behaviors tracked in voter files, consumer databases, and site logs. They’ll use the numbers to uncover hidden patterns that predict how you’ll vote, if you’ll pony up with a donation, and if you’ll influence your friends to support a candidate. This panel will delve deep into the world of real-time data on Presidential campaigns, showing how it’ll be used to make decisions on everything from the layout of a signup form to where to spend millions of advertising dollars in the closing days of a campaign. Forget about which candidate has the most likes on Facebook or followers on Twitter -- and learn why 2012 will be the year of Big Data in American politics.

    At 9:30am to 10:30am, Sunday 11th March

    In Rio Grande, Hilton Garden Inn Austin Downtown

  • Data Is Sexier Than Sex... And I'll Prove It

    by Giedre Aleknonyte

    Big. Complicated. Often dirty. Sexy? Interactive data visualizations (charts and graphs) have helped make data consumable, accessible, and yes, sexy. It’s that sex appeal that has us clamoring to see our twitter, AdWords, conversion, and other data in a sleek, interactive, “I want the answers now” views. Data has snuck its way into our lives – from our offices, to our bedrooms. It’s everywhere. And as it continues to penetrate all areas of our lives it also continues to be delivered in a variety of different formats – some better than others. From the corny quick-stat charts in USA today to smart interactive graphs embedded in blogs, posted in online publications, and now frequently dominating the screens of our work computers. We’re starting to become obsessed, and more importantly, held accountable for much of the data consuming our lives. So, we admit it. Data is sexy. Especially when it’s easy to understand, interactive, and is in a format that easily facilitates smart business decision making. Luckily it doesn’t have to be as scary, or intimidating, or (potentially) as uncomfortable as that first time…

    At 11:00am to 11:15am, Sunday 11th March

    In Texas Ballroom 4-7, Hyatt Regency Austin

    Coverage audio clip

  • How to Build Privacy By Design into Web and Mobile

    by Tarik Kurspahic

    Building great online and mobile products is hard enough with a small team and limited resources, so why add to the difficulty by embracing “privacy by design” principles? With so many free, easy web tools available and an “everyone else is doing it” mentality, why take time to create extra user controls and transparency? The reality is your users are starting to understand the issues and will soon demand it. You should demand it too. But most online tools compromise user privacy at some level, and almost none provide the new benefits that result when privacy is baked in from the start. So, what to do? You can build your own tools, requiring time, skill, patience, and functionality trade-offs; pay a third party for their tools; or adapt open source solutions. Or you can shrug your shoulders and roll the dice... In this session, learn how the CTO of Personal, a private personal network and data vault service, has built privacy into the company’s DNA and how you can too.

    At 12:30pm to 12:45pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Texas Ballroom 4-7, Hyatt Regency Austin

    Coverage audio clip

  • Data Is the New Oil: Wealth and Wars on the Web

    by Michael Fertik, DJ Patil, Owen Tripp and John Clippinger

    Oil has an unnerving ability to blow up the economy, cause wars and disrupt ecosystems. It’s a paramount resource and industry creator, spurring trillion dollar economies mining, refining and managing the asset. In the 21st century, we’re experiencing the dawn of a new fuel, also poised to create opportunity and turmoil: data. Multibillion-dollar industries, from search engines to social networking to online advertising, have been built on the aggregation of personal data, information the World Economic Forum likens to a “new type of raw material … on par with capital and labor.” We’re fighting a war on oil now. Will an entirely different war on data soon break out? We believe so.

    The “Data is Oil” project is the brainchild of two personal data experts, Michael Fertik, CEO of Reputation.com and World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer, and John Clippinger, Research Scientist at MIT Media Lab. The project’s mission is to encourage mainstream awareness and create a profitable, user-centric ecosystem around the new asset of personal data. This is not just a question of privacy and harm, but an inversion of the web as we know it. Past fortunes were claimed brokering our keystrokes and clicks, but a paradigm shift is eminent. It’s time individuals assert control over their own data. Join Michael Fertik and John Clippinger as they explore the new resource of personal data and the trillion dollar implications for today’s data-dependent world.

    At 3:30pm to 4:30pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Room 616AB, Hilton Austin Downtown

  • Liberating Data with Interactive Charts

    by Ross Perez

    Data has been freely available on the web since its inception, but it has always been difficult to access and even harder to digest. Recently, a small but growing group of intrepid data geeks have been scrounging the web for data and turning it into something useful and comprehensible: an interactive visualization! This presentation will show you some of the most intriguing visualizations that have been published in the past year and even how to create your own. Perhaps most importantly, you will leave understanding why these visualizations and their creators are so important to the future of the web.

    At 3:30pm to 4:30pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Texas Ballroom 1-3, Hyatt Regency Austin

    Coverage audio clip

  • Beautiful Data? No, That Data is a Sex Machine

    by Stew Langille and Raymond Mooney

    Yes data is beautiful–but SEXY?! That’s right. It’s powerful, self-sufficient; it can write its own ticket. Data doesn’t need you anymore...or does it?We’re all looking for ways to pull useful information from the overwhelming amount of data flooding the Internet. Two solutions have surfaced–dataviz and semantic web. Both are taking on a life of their own but they’re tackling the problem in very different ways.Data visualizations give us the means to understand the multitude of data out there. But what’s next? Ever heard of XBRL? RDF? These and other semantic web technologies are changing the way we understand data. They give data context. Without context, data is meaningless, and data can’t organize itself.Back end semantic web & front end visualizations both make data more usable but require a human catalyst. Are we entering a time that data will make itself more usable by organizing itself contextually and representing itself visually?Moderator: Greg Ebert, Rivet Software

    At 5:00pm to 6:00pm, Sunday 11th March

    In Room 616AB, Hilton Austin Downtown