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by Erik Swan and Michael Wilde
WTF is Big Data & Why Should I Care?Love that smartphone? Navigate with your GPS? Tweeting about this session? Everything other than brushing your teeth has is generating data. Every action we do generates data & a record of that action. According to a recent study by McKinsey, 15 out of 17 industry sectors in the US have more data stored per company than the Library of Congress. The sheer volume of data, driven by new devices & disparate data sources, requires a shift in how to capture & analyze information. If you could mine data generated by your audience, what questions might you ask? Improving your perspective on what users are doing or how they're interacting with you can yield some amazing returns. Analyzing big data can be as easy as surfing the web. We'll show some cool ways to ask questions, in realtime, to some fun data sources & get amazing answers. See how to turn data into information, information to knowledge & knowledge to action.
Self-hacking is about self-awareness, pattern spotting and behaviour change. It focuses on the end result of data collection: understanding and action. As important is "data literacy" i.e. data expertise at individual level, not just for businesses and institutions. Uncovering hidden cause and effect in one's behaviour increases individual's autonomy. To self-hack, we need to have access to analytical tools and raw data. Current 'info-graphics' are a far cry from the power a sophisticated data analysis could give to an individual user. What if I want to analyse my data differently to the analysis, let's say, Withings scales app provides, cross-analyse it with my travel data from Tripit to see if my weight is related to change in my diet during travel. Or any other activity I care to track. The possibilities are endless, if only individual users had access to their data and to far more sophisticated tools for data analysis and visualisation.
9th–13th March 2012