Tag Archives: Big Data

apps4austria: Challenge to Create Community Apps by using Open Government Data

Logo apps4austriaapps4austria is a federal Austrian Challenge to create mobile Apps by using Open Government Data archives. These archives contain all kind of information that could be used by a wider public community, such as location of waste collection centers, tourism information, public statistics or public building information.

The challenge emphasises the design of apps that are using these kind of publicly available information and visualizations. Its even possible to submit concepts and ideas without concrete implementation. The submission of apps4austria is due to 1.march 2013!

Book – The Human Face of Big Data

Did you ever wondered what the Big Data Hype means to us in reality? Information and communication technology, advanced network bandwidth and intelligent data analysis and prognosis enable fantastic insights into our modern society. No matter if you are collecting data within urban areas, such as the different ways Pizza delivery is taking in Manhattan on a Friday afternoon or analyzing the crop in large agricultural facilities. Within the book The Human Face of Big Data, the authors Rick Smolan and Jennifer Erwitt present the human and society dimension of this new hype on analysing and prognosis of all kind of information.

The Human Face of Big Data captures, in glorious photographs and moving essays, an extraordinary revolution sweeping, almost invisibly, through business, academia, government, healthcare, and everyday life. It’s already enabling us to provide a healthier life for our children. To provide our seniors with independence while keeping them safe. To help us conserve precious resources like water and energy. To alert us to tiny changes in our health, weeks or years before we develop a life-threatening illness. To peer into our own individual genetic makeup. To create new forms of life.  And soon, as many predict, to re-engineer our own species. And we’ve barely scratched the surface . . .

The Human Face of Big Data

Talk ‘How to build a Recommendation Engine’

Watch this really interesting presentation by Coen Stevens, who explains how to build a recommendation engine for Wakoopa. Coen, who achieved his master degree at the TU Delft on Knowledge Based Systems and propedueses for Psychology and Philosophy at Leiden University became the Lead Recommendations Engineer at Wakoopa. He held this talk at recked.org.

Wakoopa is working on methods to understand what people do in their digital lives. In a privacy conscious way, their technology tracks what websites customers visit, what ads they see, or what apps they use. Users of Wakoopa are able to analyze that collected data in an online dashboard, and are able to optimize their digital marketing strategy accordingly.

Visual Internet Maps

Here is another nice example for a visual Internet map by Ruslan Enikeev, who visualizes the Internet nodes of different countries and regions as galaxies of stars. The distance between these stars, model a bi-dimensional presentation of links between websites on the Internet. Every site is a circle on the map, and its size is determined by website traffic, the larger the amount of traffic, the bigger the circle. The Internet map is a non-commercial project. Its main goal is to let the people see beauty of the Internet:

image source: internet-map.net

Another really famous visualization of the Internet’s backbone structure was created by Stephen G. Eick from Bell Laboratories in 1993:

The arc map displays a 3D network structure as arcs curving smoothly above a flat map of the world. The data being visualized is Internet traffic flows between fifty countries, as measured by the NSFNET backbone in 1993. The colour, thickness and height of the arcs is used to encode the traffic statistics for particular inter-country links. The arcs are also partially translucent so as not to completely obscure lines at the back of the map, while their height above the base map is in relation to total volume of traffic flowing over a link. This has the effect of making the most important (high traffic) links, the highest and therefore most visually prominent on the map. The user has considerable interactive control over the arc map, for example the arc height scaling and translucency can be varied. The map can also be rotated and scaled, so that the user can view it from any angle.

One really cool example by Felix Heinen, it was his final year work in information design, shows the the variety and attitudes of members from an internet community like Facebook. In a first visualization he shows the functions each member uses as well as additional demographic information. The second visualization shows a geographic orientation where the members of a community are located worldwide:

screenshot taken from: www.felixheinen.de

screenshot taken from: www.felixheinen.de

The book ‘Visual Complexity’ by Manuel Lima combines design and complexity to explain the art of information and knowledge extraction out of graphical visualizations. Visual Complexity presents one hundred of the most interesting examples of information-visualization by the field’s leading practitioners. Many popular examples try to visualize Internet or social graph related  aspecs, such as traffic, site links or even social connection between a huge amount of nodes.

Manuel’s Web site Visual Complexity shows hundreds of different examples for large scale data visualizations, such as social graphs, nike running tracks, research networks, technology connections, wikipedia edits during global crisis and incredibly more:

screenshot taken from: visualcomplexity.com


ACM free Learning Webinar on ‘BigData’


ACM launched a very interesting portal for getting in contact with new technologies, which is called ACM Learning Webinar. This featured talk takes a closer look at Business Intelligence (BI) and BigData and asks: “After 20 years, is it still fit for purpose? Can it deliver the type of support needed for decision-making in the next decade?” They are witnessing the birth of a new “biz-tech ecosystem,” where business and technology have become symbiotic and collaborative behavior is the norm. In this environment, decision-making is very different from what is supported by today’s BI.
This webinar explores the emerging ecosystem and poses some interesting challenges for BI vendors and implementers in 2013.