Saturday, 27 April 2013

The Age of Big Data

This BBC Horizon documentary looks at the arrival of the age of "big data". While data has been around since the dawn of time, only recently has the technology evolved that has allowed us to more efficiently capture, store and interrogate the data. This has profound implications for financial markets, but it also has many other real world applications. The documentary looks at four case studies on the use of big data, and also looks back a hundred years into the past at a pioneer in the field of big data and epidemiology. First up is a pilot program being run in the city of LA where a massive crime database is used to predict where and when future crimes will happen. Then there's a look at a big quant hedge fund, which employs over 100 PhDs and scientists; taking a scientific approach to trading and investment through the use of an enormous amount of data. Then we see how data can be used to make advertising more relevant and ultra-targeted. Finally the explosion of data is viewed in a cosmological context, with South African astronomers looking to catalogue the entire cosmos. See also: Quants: The Alchemists of Wall Street and Trillion Dollar Bet (The Midas Formula)

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