Attending the RSSB health and well-being conference recently it was hard not to be struck by the complexity and fragmentation of the occupational health landscape.
This, according to the range of medical disciplines, plus their related associations and organisations, spans across mental and physical health fields. Then there are differing organisational structures, job roles and, of course, individual health and wellbeing scenarios.
Within that context, it was equally hard not to be struck by the value of a robust data driven approach, which gives the potential to maximise individual and organisational visibility across the health spectrum. Continue reading Healthy use of data in occupational health
As is often said, knowledge is power. For retailers, knowledge is money. The more you know about your customers the better you can tailor your offering and the more sales you will make.
It’s a fairly simple formula that belies the complexity of understanding what people actually want. Continue reading Uncovering your customers’ true desires
It would be hard to imagine a life without internet in the 21st Century. It permeates every moment of our day. From when we wake until when we sleep, nearly everything we do involves the internet. We use to communicate with others, learn things, buy things and socialise. Those with Netflix or other services use it in their downtime. Most offices need it.
This is what makes the internet so powerful. If nearly everything we do is online then nearly every facet of ourselves can be pored over and studied. Everything that I have ever done online is saved somewhere, ready for anyone with the know-how to analyse and infer meaning. Continue reading Life without internet
Imagine that you’re playing a brand new video game. You insert the disc in your console and choose the easiest level of difficulty. You end up finishing the game in just a couple of hours, so you decide to try your luck on the hardest level. Suddenly the game gets a lot harder, and you lose instantly. At this point, I’d say that there are two different kinds of gamers. There are those who quit playing the game, and those who keep trying – playing the easier level over and over again to understand every small detail and gain insight into how the game works.
The same could apply to statistics. In this article, I’m going to go through some basic concepts in statistics to give you a foundation for understanding more complicated statistical ideas. Continue reading A statistics walk-through
There’s an idealised image of town life, perhaps 40 or 50 years ago, where high streets were full of independent shops, bread was delivered by a boy on a bike, everyone said hello to each other and you could leave your front door unlocked at night. In this Werther’s Original vision of Britain, the bank manager was a person of high esteem who knew every member of the community and tailored the services his bank offered accordingly. Life has moved on and so too has the role banks play in our everyday lives. I would be surprised if anyone could name their local bank branch manager. Similarly, it is a very tall order to expect bank employees to have substantial personal knowledge of every customer. Continue reading Data science can make banking more personal
When asked to write a blog post about how data science is changing construction, I joked that I would make it revolve around Thor’s Hammer. However, that joke wasn’t entirely baseless. In Norse mythology, Thor’s Hammer was a tool capable of immense abilities despite its small size. Now, something even smaller and with equally powerful possibilities is coming to our construction sites. I’m talking about wearable sensors. Continue reading Thor, wearables and construction
In my short time at Profusion we have been developing our understanding of today’s smart city movement. As a business with a presence in Dubai – exposed to the Emirate’s public ambition to be the smartest, happiest, place to live on the planet – why wouldn’t we?
But the trends driving smart city thinking extend far beyond Dubai – indeed Dubai may be an outlier in the context of these global phenomena. Consider for example: rapid economic development, the pace of urbanisation, the growth of the consumer class, climate change and extreme weather, public health, economic competitiveness and more. Continue reading Smart city thinking today
Depending on what you read, the advent of wearable devices is either New Year’s Day 1984 or the start of a meaningless fad like Cleggmania. It’s safe to say wearable devices won’t be a passing fashion, simply because they have such practical applications and are getting more affordable and diverse. To the question on whether wearable devices will become a terrifying agent of social control – the answer is no. Privacy concerns, although legitimate, are largely overblown. Consumers wield a lot of power in relation to how data from wearable devices is used. A backlash directed against a business that misuses wearable data is likely to have an industry-wide chilling effect. If it doesn’t, consumer pressure will cause wearable device makers to think twice about how data collected from their devices can be used. With this in mind, the question for marketers is what can they actually do with wearable data? Continue reading What can you actually do with wearable data?
A cursory look at the quality of discourse on Twitter and Facebook might lead you to believe that the world is becoming an increasingly dumb place. While this might be true (and there’s plenty of argument on social media about that very point), there’s no escaping the fact that technology is getting smarter. Continue reading Keeping your data personal in the ‘smart’ era
We love patterns. From the moment we are born they are, quite literally, the building blocks of intelligence that help us see how the world does, and doesn’t, fit together.
In the world of data science, data visualisation is an essential tool to discover, refute, prove and predict relationships within infinitely large volumes of information and to give clients insights not previously accessible. The best visualisations work on several different levels at the same time – they are easy and quick to understand, while they inform and engage the viewer.
This award-winning graphic, created by Oliver Uberti (of London: The Information Capital fame) appeared in National Geographic in 2011 and is an example of how data visualisation/visual journalism does just that. Continue reading Seeing the forest and the trees