Similar to the way open source changed the way technology is built and used, open data has begun to change the way the world looks at data. Anything that can be measured can be resolved. Applications built on top of open data can be used to monitor among other things, the learning patterns of students, their performance patterns, teacher absenteeism, and on a larger scale regions that perform better and regions that perform poorly. This creates a better grip on the problem we are encountering as well as the scale of the problem.
Collaborative data journalism platform Swarmize enables journalists to tell new, collaborative stories by making use of real-time data collection and visualization. Users can create surveys, or swarms, to collect large data sets and the tool then ensures all data is gathered in the right format, without anomalies that might prevent journalists from taking advantage of the full data.
In 2014, enterprises advanced their big data initiatives by converting plans into working projects and even implementations of big data that have transformed the business. In 2015, these businesses will know much more about big data, and what it can and cannot do. Unsurprisingly, many will create their 2015 budgets based upon what they have learned.
With at least 4,500 people dead, public-health authorities in west Africa and worldwide are struggling to contain Ebola. Borders have been closed, air passengers screened, schools suspended. But a promising tool for epidemiologists lies unused: mobile-phone data.