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Big Data Models: Help me crowdsource sources

I’m thrilled that I’m going to be writing an article for Scientific American on big data models — models that cover some huge swath of life, such as the economy, the climate, sociopolitical change, etc. What’s the promise and what are the challenges? How far can such models scale?

So, who do you think I should interview? What projects strike you as particularly illuminating? Let me know in the comments, or at


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3 Responses to “Big Data Models: Help me crowdsource sources”

  1. I suggest you interview Nathalie Miebach. She is an amazing speaker working with huge climate data sets. Her work and insights are extremely worthwhile and her sculpture is stunning!

    She most recently presented to our group of scientists at MIT Lincoln Laboratory and I can’t recommend her highly enough.

  2. David,
    Check out the *World Values Survey* – it’s not as big as the mega data aggregations that are possible via government sources, but it is packed with interesting and topical material with a vast coverage. It is based on good old fashion surveys across 150+ countries and spanning 30 years. So for example when you hear about Islamic attitudes to sex (in the press) you can tabulate responses to a battery of questions on the topic comparing the group of interest versus the ‘rest’ – over time, age groups, income, education etc etc. Pretty quickly you see just what a rich mosaic of diversity exists within, let alone between, groups we stereotypically imagine to be different to each other and homogeneous in themselves. See: and

  3. Kevin Kelly

Web Joho only

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