Researchers Forecast the Spread of Diseases Using Wikipedia
They made the assumption that if a disease is spreading somewhere, there people start looking for information about the disease on wikipedia.
This implicitly makes some big assumptions, among which the facts that people are aware of the disease and that they have internet access.
You can easily understand why their approach is of very limited usefulness, and scientifically questionable. I think that it is not by chance that their method fails to work when analyzing data for Uganda (where internet usage probably isn't widespread) and does not score well for China (where censorships both limits information about disease outbreaks and internet access).
They also state in their paper: "With these constraints in mind, we used our professional judgement to select diseases and countries.", and this raised my eyebrows a lot...
I would like to put at chance their approach by sifting wikipedia access data looking for Ebola keyword in slovenian language, and then forecast the diffusion of Ebola in Slovenia (equal to nil up to now...), but I try to use my time for testing methods that are better-posed.
"There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics."
I'm most interested in robots that will...
But I wonder if this classifies as "Automate basic jobs so I don't have to talk to humans" or as "Fight other people for my amusement"
Big Data Knows When You Are About To Quit Your Job
...I think that we should study the algorithm, and adopt behaviours that can deliver us more money from our employer :-)
As Prison Population Sinks, Jails Are a Steal
This should stop jailbreaking...
Do Specs Matter Anymore For the Average Smartphone User?
Actually, when talking about telephones, he said: "ten keys ought to be enough for anybody".
CIA Tested Primitive Chatbots For Interrogation In the 1980s
...it seems that CIA is developing a USB waterboard to be interfaced with the interrogation chatbot.
To prepare for a coronal mass ejection, I ...
...they are probably the best weapon to stop cornal events.
Ozone Layer Recovering But Remains Threatened
...the bozone layer grows faster.
Microsoft Paid NFL $400 Million To Use Surface, But Announcers Call Them iPads
..Apple sued NFL for having called "Ipad" a Microsoft Surface tablet.
AMD Releases New Tonga GPU, Lowers 8-core CPU To $229
They do. AMD will sell you just a core for only $28.625. Isn't it a ripoff ?!?
Uber Now Blocked All Over Germany
The german national anthem so begins:
Deutschland, Deutschland uber alles
uber alles in der Welt.
Now try singing it after blocking Uber...
What's After Big Data?
How do you want it ? Rare, medium or well done ?
C++14 Is Set In Stone
...C++14 decays to N++14 as well.
German Intelligence Spying On Allies, Recorded Kerry, Clinton, and Kofi Annan
...I find the concept of "German intelligence" an oxymoron.
Ask Slashdot: What Would You Do With Half a Rack of Server Space?
Remove the unused CPUs and disks, fill the free space with beer bottles, and take advantage of the cooling capabilities of the rack!
China Plans Particle Colliders That Would Dwarf CERN's LHC
Or the markets will soon be invaded by cheap made-in-China Higgs bosons. Although swiss-made Higgs are known to be by far more precise and accurate, the cheap chinese bosons will send CERN factory into bankrupt, unless some kind of duty is introduced to slow down foreign particles.
Fossils of Cambrian Predator Preserved With Brain Impressions
...poorly preserved traces of cambrian little animals were found in the predator's stomach!
How Japan Lost Track of 640kg of Plutonium
They stored their plutonium stockpile carefully (also because packing it too tight is a very bad idea), but they were not aware that it was made of Pu-233. This explains why the stockpile they bought was sold at such a bargain price on the market...
Site of 1976 "Atomic Man" Accident To Be Cleaned
they will use this method to clean up the site.
The Internet of Things Comes To Your Garden
...I think I will continue mowing the grass by myself, rather than wasting twice the time fixing network interfaces, rebooting controllers, changing batteries, etc.