Big Data | St. Louis Public Radio

Big Data

The Institute in Critical Quantitative, Computational, and Mixed Methodologies will launch in 2020. The program will train up to 75 researchers of color in data science methods.
Washington University | Flickr

Washington University is spearheading a new effort to diversify the field of data science.

Beginning in 2020, the university will train faculty and grad students from across the country in how to use data science tools and methods. The three-year program will focus specifically on recruiting underrepresented minorities, including Latino, indigeneous and black scholars. 

Corn stalks sit in a new greenhouse structure, which features 160,000 feet of glass at Monsanto on Oct. 28, 2016.
Carolina Hidalgo | St. Louis Public Radio

Monsanto has reached a non-exclusive licensing deal with a local company to use a tool that could help engineer new, high-yielding seeds. 

The GenoMAGIC technology was developed by NRGene, an Israeli startup that opened its U.S. headquarters in St. Louis last spring. Scientists use the tool to analyze genes in plants. Monsanto wants to use it to find new combinations of genes that could produce bigger harvests for farmers.

A high-definition X-ray processes a sample at Saint Louis University.
Durrie Bouscaren | St. Louis Public Radio

It took three years for Dr. Enrico Di Cera and his team to map prothrombin, the protein that causes human blood to form clots. They ran countless samples through a machine, trying to find the conditions that would form a crystal large enough to be seen by a specialized X-ray.

“That’s the part that’s like cooking, not an exact science,” Di Cera said, at his laboratory at Saint Louis University on Thursday.

big data
Via Monsanto

Monsanto’s subsidiary Climate Corporation, the American Farm Bureau Federation, and several other agribusiness companies and farm groups have reached an agreement on big data.

The group had been meeting for months as more and more farmers begin to use data services to help them get the most of their fields. Climate Corporation, for example, uses figures about previous crop yields, soil information and weather data to help farmers make decisions about when to plant, fertilize and harvest.

The article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, July 30, 2013: Collecting court data may seem a dry business but when Andrew Winship talks about the process, it becomes clear that the end product is something far more remarkable than a simple pile of statistics on verdicts and rulings.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, June 24, 2013: “If you don’t define your terms, someone else will define them for you.” A wise teacher once taught me this. I am going to re-visit a term I used last week and unpack it with greater care: Big Data.

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, July 24, 2012 - When the Sloan Digital Sky Survey began operations in 2000, it took only weeks for it to acquire more data about the heavens than had been compiled in the whole history of astronomy, according to a 2010 article in the Economist. Over the next decade it built up a staggering 140 terabytes of information.

Mobile technology and business - what to look for

Jul 10, 2012

This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, July 10, 2012 - The advent of big data will mean changes in business. Big data alone is not the end of the road, but a steppingstone toward making this information truly useful. The ultimate goal is in moving toward predictive analytics. The first of these types of applications set to dominate the mobile space are showing up in consumers’ hands. Apple’s Siri and its recently launched Android competitor, Google Now, are prime examples of predictive analytics applications.

This article firs appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, July 9, 2012 - Anyone thinking about his or her business’ future must consider the impact of mobile computing. Even if that technology is only marginally important now and no matter what business you are in, it is likely be much more profound in the future.