Every time you make a purchase online, you're adding to the data stream. ©Monkey Business/Thinkstock In a way, big data is exactly what it sounds like -- a lot of data. Since the advent of the Internet, we've been producing data in staggering amounts. It's been estimated that in all the time leading up to the year 2003, only 5 exabytes of data were generated -- that's equal to 5 billion gigabytes. But from 2003 to 2012, the amount reached around 2.7 zettabytes (or 2,700 exabytes, or 2.7 trillion gigabytes) [sources: Intel, Lund]. According to Berkeley researchers, we are now producing roughly 5 quintillion bytes (or around 4.3 exabytes) of data every two days [source: Romanov]. The term 'big data' is usually used to refer to massive, rapidly expanding, varied and often unstructured sets of digitized data that are difficult to maintain using traditional databases. It can include all the digital information floating around out there in the ether of the Internet, the … [Read more...] about What is ‘big data’?
Datameer big data
An old-school cockpit voice recorder and flight data recorder (right) on display from United Airlines flight 232, which crashed in 1989. Renato Rotolo/AFP Photo/Getty Images The 2014 disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 revived a recurring debate over whether airplane black boxes were keeping pace with the times. In our big-data-and-cloud-storage era, when satellites and cell towers pump everything from sports to stock prices to our smartphones, why do we still lock away critical data on a box that can go down with the plane? It wasn't a new argument. Similar questions cropped up during attempts to locate the black box from Air France Flight 447, which crashed into the Atlantic Ocean in 2009, killing 228 people. Searchers spent two years hunting down that device, which lay so deep -- 12,800 feet (3,900 meters) -- that rescuing it required a special robot sub. Had not Honeywell's black box surpassed its required specs, the device would have succumbed to water and … [Read more...] about Should black box data be stored in the cloud?
Giz Asks In this Gizmodo series, we ask questions about everything from space to butts and get answers from a variety of experts. The widespread use of facial recognition technology is almost upon us. A new iPhone is on the horizon, and it might not even have a fingerprint reader—instead, you could be unlocking your phone with your face. Facial recognition is not new. It’s been a sci-fi staple for decades, and its practical roots are in the 1960s with Palo Alto researchers on RAND Tablets manually mapping out people’s features. Even back then we could give a computer enough data to be able to match a person to a their photograph. The group, led by Woodrow William Bledsoe even managed to calculate a compensation for any tilt, lean, rotation and scale of the head in a photograph. Data inputs stayed pretty rudimentary, with manual input of details being replaced by the Eigenfaces in the ‘80s and ‘90s. This would be the start of computer vision systems … [Read more...] about What’s the Worst That Could Happen With Huge Databases of Facial Biometric Data?
When a big data breach makes the news, there's one thing that can get lost in the noise -- the harm that hacking causes regular people like you.Experts tend to focus on the number of people whose records hackers stole, or whether the breached company could have prevented the hack. Those are important questions, but you can be forgiven for wondering what they have to do with you. What, really, is the worst that could happen to you personally?Plenty, according to consumer advocates. That's because data breaches make crimes such as identity theft and other scams much easier for criminals to carry out. That includes the blockbuster data breaches of 2018, such as when sophisticated attackers breached millions of Facebook accounts in September, or when a hacker accessed information from 27 million Ticketfly accounts in May or when hackers stole information from 500 million travelers in a breach of a database owned by Marriott.After your data gets stolen, it often goes up for sale on black … [Read more...] about Data breaches can sucker-punch you. Prepare to fight back
Tennis pro Kei Nishikori wipes sweat away while competing during the 2016 Australian Open. Michael Dodge/Getty Images Most of us think of sweat as something gross that we don't want other people to notice, which is why antiperspirants and deodorants have become an $18 billion industry. But scientists are pretty interested in what comes out of your three million or so sweat glands, which can pump out as much as 1.6 quarts of fluid per hour when you're jogging on the treadmill. A newly developed flexible array of sensors can mine data from perspiration. Der-Hsien Lien and Hiroki Ota/UC Berkeley Though about 99 percent of your perspiration is water, the chemical composition of the remaining one percent has the potential to reveal all sorts of critical information about your momentary physical state, such as whether you're becoming dehydrated or fatigued. Because the sweat glands excrete chemicals produced by your kidneys, lungs and other organs, your sweat can … [Read more...] about Newly Developed Wearable Tech Can Analyze Your Sweat for Important Data