Section 002, Instructor: Larry Dignan

Weekly Question #8: Complete by April 10, 2017

Leave your response as a comment on this post by the beginning of class on April 10, 2017. Remember, it only needs to be three or four sentences. For these weekly questions, I’m mainly interested in your opinions, not so much particular “facts” from the class!

Here is the question:

Once again, find another online article dated within last two weeks from a credible source that has something to do with data and is interesting and relevant to you. Copy and paste the URL directly into your response followed by a few sentences that explain what is interesting about it.

27 Responses to Weekly Question #8: Complete by April 10, 2017

  • I usually wonder what happens to the airplane waste and how much does it weigh. According to the article, airlines passengers generated 5.2m tones of waste in 2016. This is a significant amount of waste and it bothers me because I am a person who travels a lot, and I consider myself to be among those people who contributes airlines waste. The article states that the waste contains the toilet waste, wine bottles, half-eaten lunch trays, unused toothbrushes, and etc. I felt worse after hearing that because i thought the food I did not touch would be recycled at least, not knowing they threw them away. Also, the article states this costs this industry $500M per year, which is also a significant amount of money that can be reduced and add toward ticket costs. I am hoping they solve this issue and have their products be recycled instead of being thrown away unused so probably can lower air fair for everyone.

  • Cybersecurity has become an increasingly prevalent problem in the past couple years, especially in an increasingly digitized society. Even still, Americans are still a little unsure of cybersecurity topics. For instance, only only 54% of surveyed Americans are able to correctly identify a phishing attack, which could give up personal data. Additionally, only 46% understood that email is not encrypted by default, and 39% of users are “aware that internet service providers (ISPs) are able to see the sites their customers are visiting while utilizing the ‘private browsing mode.'” From a basic standpoint, adults are less likely to identify a secure password from a list, making their accounts even more vulnerable. With the vast amount of data on the internet and in the cloud, etc., this really poses a problem for our future security.

  • As we discussed in class, healthcare agencies are trying to monitor people’s health by using digital devices (such as Fitbit). However, this monitoring is going beyond the healthcare field and into the sports field. It is common for athletes to be constantly watched to measure their weight, calorie intake, etc. to keep them healthy, but now they are using Big Data to get more information. This study is a bit different, as instead of analyzing the information given, it looks at how the athletes are responding to giving out their information. The study “describes Big Data and its relation to the digital divide before tracing out how athletes might respond to Big Data monitoring by presenting concerns about privacy and/or embracing a quantified self.” The results showed that athletes are changing their routines in order to give better data. Knowing this, the researchers will “consider these responses [and use them as] a starting point for further work on how athletes should treat Big Data and its implication for sports.”

  • My article explains how analytics have taken over the game of basketball and now are relied on way too much. Recently in the last 5-7 years, NBA GM’s and scouts have started using advanced statistical analyses on potential draft prospects to try and predict if they will pan out and be a contributor to their team or not. Mark Cuban is a notable owner and businessman and he talks about how analytics are soon going to be inferior to AI.


    I found this article quite interesting because my brother is actually going though the process of selecting colleges and he is an athlete. He is a soccer player, however, he was a multi sport athlete for most of his life until high school. My mom wanted to be a multi sport to appeal to college scouts more, but the data from this article proves that soccer is often a single sport commitment. I think sports such as soccer and gymnastics have more single sport athletes because they can be competed year round. Football and lacrosse are seasonal sports, so it is often encouraged that participants of these sports participate in another sport in their “off season” to stay in shape.


    I found this article very interesting because it ultimately sets a precedent which will affect us all. This article discusses the legislation signed by President Trump this past week that allows Internet Service Providers (ISPs) to sell private customer browsing history and data to third party companies. This is very dangerous. Before, Americans were able to read whatever newspapers, magazines, and literature they wanted in paper-form and no one would ever know what they had read. However, this historical consumption privacy is lost with this bill. It’s particular interesting legislation because I read another article that talks about the political dark money involved in the passage of this bill. It’s eye-opening to consider how this law passed even though it doesn’t have the support of a single American. It is truly American law bought and paid for by private companies. ISPs say they will not sell this data despite the bill. But that could easily be a short-term point of view. Time will tell, and America will prevail. But, as always… at what expense? And at what expense to whom?


    Data and privacy have become a contentious topic over the years. This article reveals how your Android apps may be pairing up to steal your data. A recent study by four Virginia Tech researchers has shown more than 20,000 app pairings that leak data. By creating a system that dives into the structure of Android apps to understand how they exchange information with other apps on the same phone and analyzing the final destination of the data, they found that nearly half of the receivers in leaky app pairs send sensitive data into log files, which can be intruded by cyberattacks. This shows how dangerous the leaks can be. The study also shows that smartphone location was more likely to be leaked than any other type of information. In one striking example, the study pointed out an app that provides prayer times for Muslims. It retrieves the user’s location and makes it available to other apps on the smartphone.


    Ths article deals with how cybercriminals look to tax time and data obtainable on LinkedIn and Facebook to get information on employees. By getting information easily obtainable on the internet such as employer, position and 401ks from companies that post them online, cybercriminals are targeting company HR leaders, calling to get information such as social security number, salary amount, etc. They can then use this information to steal the employees identity and obtain credit in their name. HR people need to be more cautious of who they give information to; just because someone identifies themselves as an HR leader doesn’t mean they are being honest.

  • The data I found to be interesting was a 2010 Report to Congress on White House Staff. I used the filter options to view the salary of employees base on title as a bar chart in order to see which type of Employees make the most/least money. The positions that made the most amount of money were: Senior Advisor for Technology and Innovation to the National Economic Council Director, Assistant to the President and Deputy Chief of Staff for Policy, Assistant to the President for Economic Policy and Director to the National Economic Council, Assistant to the President, Chief of Staff to the First Lady and council Assistant to the President and Director of Office of Legislative Affairs, Assistant to the President and Senior Advisor, Assistant to the President and Director of Communications, and Policy Director at $172K. I would be interested to see if these figures are consistent from presidential year to the next/across different presidents. Based on 2010, economic policy seemed to be the highest paying job titles. I was surprised to see that a technology was among the top.

    This article talks about the history of speed reading and how it has become a popular thing. In the article, it listed some presidents that used to practice speed reading, and some popular ones are: President Kennedy, Nixon and Carter. The article are show some an example of a resource to help with speed reader. However, it comes at the cost of $4.99 and it is an application that uses RSVP (Rapid Serial Visual Presentation) to help increasingly feed text to the user. And lastly, the article found that attempting to read over 600 words per minute will lower the comprehension rate to below 75%. This article was interesting to me because as a college student, I tend to try and speed read my readings. That may not be good because it might lower my comprehension rate of the reading.

  • 5 Genius Hacks to Save Money When Online Shopping

    In the last several years, it seems online shopping has been trying to take over. At this point, it seems almost everyone has made a purchase online. While online shopping usually has the best deals and is very convenient, these companies and business are able to retain a lot of information from its consumers. Almost as if they could track their every move. From having to create an account with their website, entering your credit card and being entered into their email subscriptions (where they send an abundance of emails). And now with this new technology, being able to test eye movement for a typical person using their website and tracking what someone may have recently purchased, whether on a specific website or online in general. The article was interesting because though its purpose is to make online shoppers aware of how to save money, it also subliminally explains how to out do these companies and how to avoid some of their traps from being able to control what they expect you to do online.

    This article is about jobs in the US. The US added 98,000 jobs in March, per the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This is a sharp decline from February, and the figure falls far below most economists’ expectations. This article, however, reassures us that one slow month of job growth doesn’t change the fact that for a long time, job creation in the US has been very strong. In fact, the unemployment rate currently sits at about 4.5%, which is the lowest it has been in over a decade. Additionally, the labor force participation rate increased. Hourly earning have increased since 2012 as well. Overall, despite a slow month in job creation, the US labor market is as strong as its been in a very long time. It was interesting to me because a lot of people I know were troubled by March’s numbers, but this article reassured us that the labor market is doing just fine.

  • The article I’ve chosen talks about the 2017 NFL Draft and the takeaways from the top prospects in the draft. It talks about each prospects stats from college and the data they’ve accumulated in the NFL combine. It goes by position and the best at each position regarding their 40-yard dash time, weight, height, passer rating, catches, etc. Data has had a huge influence on the Draft. It decides who is going to be picked and when they are going to be picked. They also use data and statistics to predict how well that player will do in the NFL. All the stats I have listed earlier plays a huge role for each player and what their future will look like. The game of football revolves around the analysis of data. You cannot watch a game or sport center without hearing about a player and their stats.

    I found this article quite interesting because I just did a research on Amazon Redshift a while ago. It is a data warehouse like Oracle. As a competitor of Redshift, Oracle offers some new features such as combine SQL and NoSQL together, enhanced Natural Language Processing, etc which can reduce the amount of time spent preparing data for analysis.

    This article pertains to the data that a car collects. A self-driving car can generate 1 gigabyte of data per second. In less than a minute you would have enough data to fill an average iPhone. This data is extremely valuable to those in the field because auto-accidents cause $242 billion a year. With this data the car manufacturers can create better more reliable self-driving car.

  • This article talks about if data breaches are more impactful on hospitals than other organizations. It discusses the importance of protecting patient data and also the main focus of the hospital in general. There is a big correlation between consumer data and patient data. Even though they can be seen as the same thing in some view points. The author did a good job voicing his opinion on the importance of having a good cyber security system in place.


    This article details a recent data breach suffered by GameStop, a video game retailer. The company’s website was hacked and the credit card information of its customers was believed to be put up for sale on a website. The article discusses the different ways you can protect and monitor your financial data in the chance that your data was involved in the hack.

    This article talks about data in the health care industry. Even though I am a business major, the health care industry has always been once of my main interests. There is always new and upcoming data in health care, and it is really important because it can impact peoples lives immensely. This article talks about prices, medicines, new devices and more, that could impact the industry.


    This article is about how researchers are data mining health records against different demographic factors and baselines to determine factors of pulmonary diseases and it’s cooccurrence with other diseases, symptoms, and medications. I found this study very interesting because it shows how big data has the potential to transform the health industry and uncover new insights.

  • In the ever more challenging, demanding and expensive world that that is United States higher education, students are now less likely than ever to be able to repay their student debt and thus more likely to change schools after acceptance. This poses a problem to universities which largely rely on tuition for steady income. The response to this problem is narrowing their advertisements to students who are most likely to both appreciate what a particular university has to offer and to be able to afford the costs. The way they are doing this is through the acquisition of increasingly younger students so that they have more time to select the best targets of their advertisements.


    This article discusses the problem of mistrust with government data. During Trump’s campaign he, and many other top level Republicans, questioned the jobs report created by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. They claimed that Obama was manipulating the numbers to make the unemployment rate lower and therefore make him look better. Trump even called the data “phony”. But after a strong jobs report in February he retracted those claims saying that in the past they had been phony, but now that they were good for him they are “very real”. It is interesting that he called the data fake when it didn’t benefit him but real when it did.

    This article talked about the slowdown in U.S. job increasing rate in March, which is out of expectations. However, the author explained that there was no need to worry too much about these data, and the author listed some possible reasons about this slowdown, such as weather, and change in unemployment rate.


    Here, this article goes into depth discussing the outrageous season russell westbrook is having, but uses statistics such as usage rate to prove why he is undeserving of the MVP award. They use a statistic called usage rate, which is derived from multiple statistical analyses and can determine how often a player is involved within a team’s offense. They cite russell westbrook’s usage rate as the reason he is undeserving of the MVP award.

  • Hackers are targeting Amazon’s third-party seller; they have changed the bank-deposit information on Amazon accounts of active sellers to steal tens of thousands of dollars from each. It is a problem for Amazon for a long time until recently hackers are aggressively targeting Amazon’s seller who hasn’t used them recently to post nonexistent merchandise for sale at steep discounts in an attempt to pocket the cash. Again, Amazon’s E-commerce system is becoming unsafe for the consumer, perhaps it is better to shop directly from the manufacturers.

  • Equal Pay Day: a wage gap fact check

    There are so many competing facts and misinformation about the wage gap. I thought that this article did a good job of addressing some of the myths and misunderstandings behind the numbers we see, and also just good data tips in general like finding a reputable source, reading the small print, and checking the source. It’s easy to take numbers out of context to manipulate a situation.

    The article also addresses the problem of intersectional issues like these, were there are a lot of contributing factors. One point was made that the wage gap could, in part, be due to a total number of hours worked because men typically work longer hours, while women “work” in unpaid roles caring for children or doing housework.

    I also just really loved the visual from this.

    The following article visualizes many key points related to our national economy and the global economy as a whole. It proves very informative regarding info related to the labor force and unemployment, and also poses as a great example to go off of for our upcoming group project. An interesting point to be discussed about the data is that the creator kept in mind error by labeling official and unofficial (but assumed accurate) numbers. Very good read.

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