Monday, May 29, 2017

The vital role of government-collected data

 Labor shortages are weighing on overall economic growth, slowing the pace of expansion in northern Utah and other fast-growing regions even as unemployment remains stubbornly high in Rust Belt cities like Cleveland and in regions still recovering from the 2008 recession, like inland California…” Confessions of a confident mediocre (data) man

It was bound to happen: Amazon launches first grocery store

Lindt Cafe victim families scathing of top police and 'dangerous' psychiatrist

'My handshake wasn't innocent': Macron describes first meeting with Trump

Data Driven Journalism: “Journalists may wish to use data from social media platforms in order to provide greater insight and context to a news story. For example, journalists may wish to examine the contagion of hashtags and whether they are capable of achieving political or social change. Moreover, newsrooms may also wish to tap into social media posts during unfolding crisis events. For example, to find out who tweeted about a crisis event first, and to empirically examine the impact of social media. Furthermore, Twitter users and accounts such asWikiLeaks may operate outside the constraints of traditional journalism, and therefore it becomes important to have tools and mechanisms in place in order to examine these kinds of influential users. For example, it was found that those who were backing Marine Le Pen on Twitter could have been users who had an affinity to Donald Trump.  There remains a number of different methods for analysing social media data. Take text analytics, for example, which can include using sentiment analysis to place bulk social media posts into categories of a particular feeling, such as positive, negative, or neutral. Or machine learning, which can automatically assign social media posts to a number of different topics…”

“Apple is very seriously committed to protecting your data and we work hard to deliver the most secure hardware, software and services available. We believe our customers have a right to understand how their personal data is managed and protected. This report provides information regarding requests Apple received from government agencies and private parties from July 1 through December 31, 2016.”
  • This report documents a record high request by government agencies for data on customers who use a range of Apple products and services, including iPhone, iCloud, iTunes, photos, calendars, contacts and . The number of requests for data has doubled since the time of the last report, which covered the first quarter of 2017.

The modern economy has never been more reliant on data. Businesses, governments, and families must navigate the complexities of a world made possible by new technologies and innovative business practices.Without reliable information about the economic and social environment, it is impossible in many instances to make sensible choices. For example, when deciding where to locate distribution centers, stores, and warehouses, the American Community Survey’s (ACS’s) accurate local data have proven invaluable to retailers (Kleinhenz 2015). Researchers know significantly more about the impact of pro-work policy reforms in the 1990s due to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)—and are better prepared to advise policy makers on future reforms. Addressing fundamental questions important to families, the ACS aids prospective students in making better college and career choices…

Beth Schwartzapfel – The Marshall Project – New Tool That Could Revolutionize How We Measure Justice: “The enormity of the country’s criminal justice system — 15,000 state and local courts, 18,000 local law enforcement agencies, more than two million prisoners — looks even more daunting when you consider how little we know about what is actually going on in there. Want to know who we prosecute and why? Good luck. Curious about how many people are charged with misdemeanors each year? Can’t tell you. How about how many people reoffend after prison? We don’t really know that, either. In an age when everything is measured — when data determines the television we watch, the clothes we buy and the posts we see on Facebook — the justice system is a disturbing exception