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Exploring the world of self-tracking: who wants our data and why?

Benjamin Franklin used to keep charts of his time spent and virtues lived up to. Today, we use technology to self-track: our hours slept, steps taken, calories consumed, medications administered. But what happens when we turn our everyday experience — in particular, health and wellness-related experience — into data? “Self-Tracking” (MIT Press) by Gina Neff […]

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Estimating the Local Geographies of Digital Inequality in Britain: London and the South East Show Highest Internet Use — But Why?

Despite the huge importance of the Internet in everyday life, we know surprisingly little about the geography of Internet use and participation at sub-national scales. A new article on Local Geographies of Digital Inequality by Grant Blank, Mark Graham, and Claudio Calvino published in Social Science Computer Review proposes a novel method to calculate the […]

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Alan Turing Institute and OII: Summit on Data Science for Government and Policy Making

The benefits of big data and data science for the private sector are well recognised. So far, considerably less attention has been paid to the power and potential of the growing field of data science for policy-making and public services. On Monday 14th March 2016 the Oxford Internet Institute (OII) and the Alan Turing Institute […]

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Facts and figures or prayers and hugs: how people with different health conditions support each other online

Online support groups are being used increasingly by individuals who suffer from a wide range of medical conditions. OII DPhil Student Ulrike Deetjen‘s recent article with John Powell, Informational and emotional elements in online support groups: a Bayesian approach to large-scale content analysis uses machine learning to examine the role of online support groups in the healthcare process. They categorise 40,000 online posts […]

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Topic modelling content from the “Everyday Sexism” project: what’s it all about?

We recently announced the start of an exciting new research project that will involve the use of topic modelling in understanding the patterns in submitted stories to the Everyday Sexism website. Here, we briefly explain our text analysis approach, “topic modelling”. At its very core, topic modelling is a technique that seeks to automatically discover the topics contained within a group […]

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The limits of uberization: How far can platforms go?

Platforms that enable users to come together and  buy/sell services with confidence, such as Uber, have become remarkably popular, with the companies often transforming the industries they enter. In this blog post the OII’s Vili Lehdonvirta analyses why the domestic cleaning platform Homejoy failed to achieve such success. He argues that when buyer and sellers enter into repeated transactions they can […]

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