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  • IBM's big data already leads to important insights

IBM's big data already leads to important insights

Friday, April 5, 2013

Big data is expected to be the next big thing in Nova Scotia and Canada as a whole. The Atlantic province is well positioned to capitalize on the upcoming analytics boom, given that the capital is the site of IBM's Client Innovation Centre.

IBM is already hard at work on utilizing big data, tapping into the massive amounts of social media chatter and complementary data to identify and solve today's biggest problems. For example, the information technology firm recently identified some of the best and worst cities for drivers using the IBM Social Sentiment Index.

"The ability to effectively analyze data will define the next few decades of transportation, within cities and beyond," said John Longbottom, Canadian smarter cities leader for IBM. "Worldwide, cities are using these kinds of data insights to ... measure the condition of assets and detect patterns to better plan routes, schedules and optimize vehicles, equipment, and facilities to expand capacity."

The index revealed that urban cities like Toronto were hot spots for social buzz about traffic. During an 11-month timeframe, residents of the city tweeted 10,000 times about their experiences hitting the road, with four out of 10 reporting negative news. On the other hand, Halifax's transportation was the source of very little social chatter. During the same period, the capital city was the fodder for only 1,000 social media posts, and only 20 percent were negative.

This success is owed to Nova Scotia's world-class infrastructure and short commutes, two features that help attract global companies to the province.