A few Links

I’ve read a few longer articles over the past few days which I’ve found really thought provoking and thought I would share them as I really recommend you read them.

First of all:
How Target Can Predict If You’re Pregnant
Fascinating article from the NYT outlining Target’s GuestID and analytics department. Humans very much creatures of habit but there are times in people’s lives when habits are severely disrupted and one of the major ones was having a baby, target wanted a way to know when their customers may be pregnant so they could send them coupons. Subtly.

Then there is this one:
On the growing digital divide
It’s something I hear about a lot, especially from sites such as The Guardian but not something I had put much thought into. California has recently voted to shutter funding for public librarys but this user posts a very insightful account of working in a public library and the risk of an ever larger digital divide as services are closed in the age of austerity that we live in.

And finally:
The case for the James Webb Space Telescope
Hubble came in late, way over budget and at first didn’t work. But when we look back now at the level of information it has given us I doubt many astronomers would say it shouldn’t have happened. Moving on, as Hubble ages and the replacement, the James Webb Space Telescope, is also facing the same woes this piece tells of the need for a space based telescope to peer into the heavens even further.

All three articles are not short but I would so dearly like you to read them.