Google LLC has been busily collecting health data on millions of Americans across 21 states, The Wall Street Journal reported Monday. The initiative, which Google seemed to have kept secret from the public, is codenamed “Project Nightingale.” Documents obtained by the Journal reveal that the heath data has been shared in partnership with St. Louis-based chain of hospitals called Ascension, a Catholic hospital that calls itself “a faith-based healthcare organization dedicated to transformation through innovation across the continuum of care.”
Data is a multi-billion dollar industry, and it will only grow as data-fueled technologies like AI become more advanced. It's used to train powerful AI systems to recognize patterns in human and machine behavior, to train AI on images, sounds, and objects. Essentially data is AI's window to the outside world. However, huge amounts of data are needed to train AI systems effectively, and China collects more data from its civilians than any other country.
A top House Republican wants internet users to own data that they generate online to give them more control over what information is collected about them by internet companies. Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.), the ranking member on the House Judiciary Committee, released a set of internet privacy principles on Wednesday he said will guide legislation that he plans to release in the coming months.
An education in data science can help you land a job as a data analyst, data engineer, data architect or data scientist. The data science path you ultimately choose will depend on your skillset and interests, but each career path will require some level of programming, data visualization, statistics and machine learning knowledge and skills.
Drone aircraft used to be prohibitively expensive, but now you can buy a camera-equipped drone that talks to your smartphone for under $100. The US Department of Homeland Security has issued an alert that drones manufactured by Chinese firms might have become a little too accessible. The DHS says much of the data collected by these drones ends up on servers in mainland China where the Chinese government can access it.
The newly released image of a black hole (below) is a watershed moment for physics. Finally, we can put some of Einstein’s most famous predictions from a century ago to the test, but it was not as easy as pointing a big lens at the M87 galaxy and pressing a button. It took years of work and the collaboration of more than 200 scientists to make it happen. It also required about half a ton of hard drives.
Momentum is gaining in Washington for a privacy law that could sharply rein in the ability of the largest technology companies to collect and make money off people's personal data. A national law, the first of its kind in the U.S., could allow people to see or prohibit the use of their data. Companies would need permission to release such information.
Some computer scientists are worried that our ability to create data will eventually outstrip our ability to store it, so Microsoft is looking at ways to store that data in DNA. The company has created the world’s first automated DNA read and write platform, as PCMag reports. It’s not as simple or portable as a flash drive, but it could be the future of data storage.
AI has a data quality problem. In a survey of 179 data scientists, over half identified addressing issues related to data quality as the biggest bottleneck in successful AI projects. Big data is so often improperly formatted, lacking metadata, or “dirty,” meaning incomplete, incorrect, or inconsistent, that data scientists typically spend 80 percent of their time on cleaning and preparing data to make it usable, leaving them with just 20 percent of their time to focus on actually using data for analysis.
Data science is a growing and promising field that attracts more and more young talents on a year-to-year basis. The world has accumulated enormous amounts of data that needs to be turned into valuable and actionable information for business, politics, education, and economy. We do not even notice how the world has changed over the last decades. It is completely driven by data that defines which venture will be successful.