Extracting data from the internet has become an increasingly high priority for organizations with teams that focus on mining and leveraging huge amounts of data as part of an effective, collaborative and actionable work product. Tools and protocols to extract content rich information are in demand as researchers seek to discover new knowledge at an ever increasing rate. As robots (bots) and intelligent agents are at the heart of many extraction tools, Marcus Zillman has created a compilation of a wide range of free, fee and collaborative sources, services and sites that offer users a range of approaches to extract information from the web.
This is Francis Irving’s concise and focused overview of best practices used by the Humanitarian Data Exchange (HDX), a data hub created by the United Nations and used by agencies, NGOs, companies, governments and academics to share data.
Marcus Zillman’s comprehensive, actionable guide provides links to hundreds of resources that assist students of all ages to leverage free and low cost resources to facilitate more efficient, effective learning – either as an individual, as part of a team, in a classroom, or as a member of a project oriented group. Whether you are seeking best practices for individual or team study – including guides, apps, wikis, tutorials, links to free courses and academic topical and subject guides, or how to locate e-text books and how to correctly create bibliographies and citations, this guide has all this information and so much more. If you are a student, an educator, a librarian or a researcher, these resources, many of which are from colleges, universities, libraries and schools, will expand your horizons and support your effort to be a creative, innovative, successful learner.
Learning new skills to support more effective engagement in a competitive job market has attracted many job seekers and employees to online education, most often through Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). Alan Rothman is proficient in the arena of e-learning and expands the discussion of what courses are available to how they are accredited and subsequently whether they are recognized by potential employers.
Alan Rothman discusses and documents a method of testing used in the private sector that also has significant in public sector applications – the process called “A/B testing.” Users are shown two nearly identical versions of something with one of them containing some slight variation. They are then asked to choose which one they prefer between the two. Rothman references how Google makes extensive use of this testing and design methodology, and also provides insight into how the federal government is implementing the tactics and strategies of this testing to provide more agile and actionable citizen and business related services.
The Next Librarian of Congress – What to do about the Internet Archive and Google Books scanning project?
David Rothman offers his insights and perspective on the work and challenges that await the next Librarian of Congress. He calls for an individual who is not only steeped in the requisite expertise of research, technology, learning, teaching and freedom of information, but in following with a cause he has long championed he states “we need someone with “a love of reading—including the e-book variety.”
Alan Rothman attended a demo of IBM’s Watson Technology, and the shares insights about the core components of this high profile new analytical tool. The technology holds potential value for multiple sectors and cross functional work streams, and as Alan notes, is still under development with additional applications forthcoming.
Ken Strutin argues that cut-and-paste is a laudable method for reducing transcription errors in copying citations and quotations. However, he identifies that a problem arises when it is used to lift verbatim sections of a party’s arguments into a case decision. Stipulations and proposed orders from counsel for both parties might be enviable and practicable, but judgment and fact-finding are solely in the province of the court. This has been a long standing issue that has spanned technologies from shears and paste-pot to typewriters and computers, and which might culminate in a Turing Test for case law.
Lorette Weldon shares her roadmap to Computer Savviness – be flexible enough to learn new concepts, methods, and technology developed for different kinds of communities – and do not be not averse to discovering and trying new applications and tools to learn and discern what may work best for your specific environment.
Alan Rothman’s commentary offers actionable information about a new technology from IBM called Watson that is a powerful tool for researchers whose work engages data mining, knowledge management and competitive intelligence. Rothman attended a recent presentation that demonstrated how Watson is deployed as a search and discovery tool whose object is the huge video archive of TED Talks content.