Items tagged "Big Data"

Read about our views on marketplace changes as well as updates on our research and event programmes.

At the Privacy by Design User Forum in Toronto, attending Founding Partners from the Respect Network, the world’s first peer-to-peer network for personal and business clouds, today named Ontario's Information and Privacy Commissioner Dr. Ann Cavoukian as the network's first Honorary Architect.

The occasion was not only the conference, but also the release of a ground-breaking paper "Big Privacy: Bridging Big Data and the Personal Data Ecosystem through Privacy by Design" co-authored by Commissioner Cavoukian and Respect Network Corporation's CEO Drummond Reed. I had the honor of contributing to it from the Respect Network side as we took it from…

The World Economic Forum’s Rethinking Personal Data Initiative has reached its third stage. The programme has already defined the value of personal data as an asset class and reinforced the value of trusted data flow. The third stage will bring together data experts with practitioners in different commercial environments so that together they can drive results that are practical, implementable, and can be widely communicated.

Ctrl-Shift has been working closely with WEF on the programme as is a contributor and key member of their international ‘Tiger Team’. This team is looking at how to create and implement the…

A few months ago we discussed The Flip – organisations turning their knowledge, expertise and information into a customer service.  A new app launched in Australia that allows McDonald’s customers to track the ingredients in their burgers shows one example of The Flip in action.

‘Track My Macca’s is a transparency tool that informs consumers about where McDonald’s sources ingredients for the food they are eating. By scanning QR codes on the side of Big Mac and other boxes, consumers can follow the journey of their meal’s ingredients and see videos about the farmers, bakers and fisherman that…

Some interesting sessions at the DataIQ conference this week. My talk was on the theme ‘Where Personal Data Meets Big Data’. One meeting point takes the form of a clash: the requirements of Big Data and of personal data protection are at loggerheads. Big Data is all about collecting as much data as you can, keeping it as long as possible (to identify trends), and using the data for as many purposes as possible (because it’s all about discovering new patterns, correlations and insights).

Data protection rules on the other hand require informed consent for the collection and use…

When hype cycles reach their peak, the connection between the thing at the heart of the hype (which may or may not be important) and what people say about this thing frays to the point of breaking. Unjustified extrapolations, logical leaps, ignoring contrary evidence, omitting consideration of other factors – these all become fair game once the hype takes over.

Panorama, a UK documentary programme with a reputation for seriousness, aired a programme last night showing the Big Data hype cycle at its peak. Let’s take a few examples.

Big Data in financial markets

In one section it implied that…

Don't target me, ask me

Posted: 24th July, 2012 | 0 comments

We've been pondering some mega-trends on this site for some while.

1. The rise in the volumes of data available (so called Big Data).

2. The lack of efficiency in the advertising model.

3. How technology is now literally in the hands of the customer.

Each is a driver of change and combined they create a massive opportunity for a re-alignment of the relationship between buyers and sellers. Understanding how to illicit and use Volunteered Personal Information (VPI) is at the heart of being able to do this. But in order for the far reaching opportunities of VPI to be realised, people have to take time to contribute…

I've been catching up a little on underlying theories of information. Here’s what I found.

James Gleick, who also wrote Chaos, is a brilliant writer. His book The Information, is a fascinating read but is ultimately disappointing because everything he says is based on theories of Claude Shannon.

Shannon was a brilliant engineer who did much to make today’s information age possible. As an engineer he was focused on getting a message from A to B as accurately and efficiently as possible. He didn’t care what it said. So his theory of information said that to measure information all…

There is now a healthy debate raging about the relative merits of Big Data versus Small Data, with some excellent stuff being written about the importance of small (i.e. personal) data.

Take these thoughts from Personal CEO Shane Green.

“Small data puts the power and tools of big data into the hands of people. It is based on the assumption that people have a significant long-term competitive advantage over companies and governments at aggregating and curating the best and most complete set of structured, machine-readable data about themselves and their lives – the “golden copy”. With proper tools,…

Big Data or God Quest?

Posted: 27th March, 2012 | 0 comments

During the heydays of CRM (Customer Relationship Management) some companies began to suffer a dangerous delusion. Bedazzled by the enormous potential of the transaction and behavioural data they were now collecting (think Tesco Clubcard), they began to believe they were on the verge of knowing all they needed to know about their customers. Some even began to boast that they knew what their customers were going to do before the customers themselves.

They had fallen for the God Quest – the quest for omniscience. Perfect  customer information was just around the corner, they believed. With perfect information would come perfect…

In our newsletter this month we have new research to tell you about. We also highlight our project looking at the Internet of Things market and round off with some key news, including some international developments.

Decisions Decisions    

We’ve published our briefing paper about the development of a revolutionary and disruptive industry for consumer decision-support services. These services empower consumers by helping them to make better decisions and change their own behaviours. The report explains why this revolution is happening now, what forms it’s taking, and what its impacts are: this is a new market that changes…

Are You the Next Big Cash Crop?

Posted: 14th March, 2012 | 0 comments

The following is a guest post by Alan published yesterday by TVO a Canadian media organisation.

What are you? A human being or a vegetable?

Okay, it’s a silly question. But in the context of "Big Data," -- the collecting of massive amounts of online data by companies, advertisers and marketers -- it’s not that silly.

Consider some differences between a human being and a vegetable. A human being has some sort of ownership and control over their own assets, a vegetable doesn’t. The farmer grows cabbages, wheat or coffee, and appropriates what they produce. The coffee plant doesn’t have any say…

The value in Internet Of Things

Posted: 13th March, 2012 | 0 comments

The Internet of Things (IoT) revolution is already underway and machines are ‘talking’ to each other. Buildings, transport infrastructure, cars, healthcare equipment, industrial resources, mobile devices and even consumer goods are able to communicate, sense, analyse and produce useful information with the potential to completely transform how we live, work, travel and manage our lives. Growth estimates vary but according to Ericsson* there are 100 to 200 million connections today, growing to 1 billion over five years.

However, at the moment the full economic potential of the Internet of Things or the Machine to Machine (M2M) market is thwarted by lack…

Big Data vs Small Data

Posted: 10th February, 2012 | 0 comments

In theory, there need not be a contradiction between Big Data and privacy. If you take a medical record, bank account or individual's mobile phone location data you can remove all personal identifiers (name, address, customer number, IP address, mobile phone identifier) so that all you have is a bundle of attributes which you can crunch together to identify patterns and trends *.

Having identified a pattern or profile you can then match it back to an individual's data, to place the person in a segment, to predict what they might do next, or perhaps offer them 'people like you'…

In this first issue of the year we highlight some of the proposals in the leaked draft of the European Data Protection legislation and we’ll give you a preview of our research looking at the privacy policies of UK online retailers. Also covered is our thinking as we debunk a few myths in a forthcoming series of blog posts ‘5 ways to misdirect resources in 2012’. In the market round-up we’re spoilt for choice but have picked out some of the key news.

EU law looks set to mandate electronic data handbacks

We are expecting to see the first draft…

Big Data, Big Dead End

Posted: 17th January, 2012 | 3 comments

‘Big Data’ seems well on its way to becoming the next big bandwagon. However, in the scheme of things I think it’s more like a Big Dead End.

Before saying why, let me first recognise where and how ‘Big Data’ is important.

Our society is transitioning from an ‘old normal’ of information scarcity to a ‘new normal’ where massive new data sets continue to come on stream. Just think of the volumes of data now being created in payments (the shift from cash to plastic to contactless and mobile payments systems), mobile (location data), online (search, click streams and the…

It’s one of the convenient fictions of the commercial world that businesses are full of clever, rational people making clever, rational decisions based on a hard, cold-eyed assessment of the facts.

Often, the reality is very different. People get distracted by fashions, trends and bandwagons. Their assessments of the relative importance of different factors are often faulty. Right now I can see five bandwagons which may be driven more by fashion than by importance. Each of them is fuelled by a large dose of truth/evidence. However, the way they’re currently being addressed, they actually serve to divert attention from even…