Your verification ID is: guDlT7MCuIOFFHSbB3jPFN5QLaQ Big Computing: Echoing the call to help Data Without Borders

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Echoing the call to help Data Without Borders

While the job of the data scientist can include increasing web traffic, clicks, and maximizing revenue. I have always found this area of application to be unsatisfying. When we first formed Revolution Computing our slogan was "we cure cancer". We wanted to run a profitable business, but it was also critical to us that the business result in positive impacts on peoples lives and on society in general.  I like to think that the Open Source community and particularly the R community keeps that idea as one of its driving motivations.

At Strata NYC 2011 Robert Kirkpatrick of UN Global Pulse asked for help from the Data Scientist community to make the world a better place, and offered examples of how our community could help the world community.

I enjoyed this talk, but it was a request for help.

On the final day of Strata NYC Drew Conway and Jake Porway launched Data Without Borders and went into action. They are going to run DataDives with some of the best Data Scientists around as volunteers to provide value and insight to NGOs and nonprofits to improve all aspects of their operations. Here is a video of that presentation:
The results so far is an oversubscribed DataDive in NYC and another DataDive in San Francisco filling up fast. That is what I love about this community. They give freely of their time and knowledge to better the world around them. The best people are people of action not words.

Another article on Data Without Borders. It is also good to see that David Smith and Revolution Analytics continues with the idea of supporting efforts for the betterment of society.

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