2020 Vision: The Future of Business Information 

Information Happens

Relationships Define Natural Language Processing

by Leonard Hancock on March 13, 2017

Vectors, ontologies, embeddings and sentiment analysis: how relationships between words are the foundation of NLP

Human language follows unexpected patterns. Varied forms of syntax and metaphor, together with context and repetition, make classification challenging for both humans and machines. Manual classification of unstructured linguistic data by human curators can be valuable, but without technological assistance, is time consuming and potentially rife with errors. When such “natural language” data is left untouched it is less usable. Enterprises are faced with the challenge of transforming huge amounts of this raw data into actionable intelligence.

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Topics: Machine Learning, AI, Natural Language Processing, Ontologies, Sentiment Analysis

Are Machines Going to Take Your Job?

by Leonard Hancock on March 6, 2017

Separating Panic from Prediction as Artificial Intelligence Replaces Careers robots.jpg

For decades Hollywood has entertained the public with stories about how Artificial Intelligence (AI) will become smart enough to replace us. These stories may have an air of authenticity for manufacturing workers, especially as machine learning has enabled robotic process automation (RPA) to handle increasingly complex tasks. But some may rightly feel it is nothing new or particularly worrisome; factory workers have seen their jobs supplemented by machines for many years.

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Topics: Machine Learning, AI, Artificial Intelligence

The Blockchain Revolution

by Leonard Hancock on February 21, 2017

Blockchain is starting to deliver on great expectations, but the story of this technology is still just beginning.


Is blockchain a digital miracle? Typing “What is Blockchain?” or “How Can I Use Blockchain?” into any search engine fills the screen with hype. Maybe it’s not quite a household word, but numerous individuals and companies see it as the future of IT security in an unsecured age.  Many think it will emerge as an opportunity for Internet of Things (IoT) devices.

Blockchain is a decentralized network of digital records open to public verification. Each record—each block of data—is time-stamped to create a chronological record, is linked to others, and is encrypted, so as not to be subject to revision.  In this way, the technology of a blockchain creates a secure, digital ledger.

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Topics: IT Security, hackers, bitcoin, IoT, Cybersecurity, blockchain, Internet of Things

Alliances, Standards and Blockchain: Hope for IoT Security

by Leonard Hancock on February 15, 2017

The high-stakes struggle to secure the Internet of Things is bringing companies together, but the way forward may come from the disruptive technology behind Bitcoin: Blockchain.


The world of machines is getting smarter and more connected. From refrigerators that access the Internet, to Wi-Fi smart scales to track your weight and BMI, to self-driving automobiles, the Internet of Things (IoT) has emerged as the future of everyday technology. Frighteningly, few in the Information Technology world would argue that the IoT is becoming more secure, and many would say the opposite. The question is, in a world where security breaches are commonplace, how can we get to a place where all devices are vastly more secure?

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Topics: IT Security, hackers, bitcoin, IoT, IBM, AT&T, Cybersecurity, blockchain, Internet of Things

Challenges to Personal and Operational IT Security Presented by Social Media

by Leonard Hancock on February 9, 2017

With social media Information and "social engineering" compromising IT security, user accounts are leaving businesses vulnerable to hackers.


It has become increasingly obvious to Security Operations Managers (SOMs) that well-orchestrated phishing campaigns can start with breaching an employee’s social media account. These campaigns, which can result in sensitive organizational data being leaked, are aimed at unsuspecting workers who fail to follow best practices to ward off such attacks. In some cases, the company itself may not have effective security protocols in place.

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Topics: Social Media, IT Security, OPSEC, hackers, Cybersecurity, social engineering

Human Content Curation Helps Prevent Spread of "Fake News"

by Leonard Hancock on February 2, 2017

Combining AI and an editorial team can prevent "fake news" and other unreliable information from influencing business decisions.


Not all content is created equal. Moreover, not all content can be trusted. New York Times followers received a sharp reminder of this axiom on Sunday, January 22, when OurMine, a hacker “security” group, infiltrated one of the media organization’s Twitter accounts. OurMine tweeted a fake news brief through the New York Times' video account (@nytvideo) claiming that Russia had launched a missile attack against the United States. The source was supposedly a “leaked statement” from Russian President Vladimir Putin. The Times quickly removed OurMine’s fake tweet: “We deleted a series of tweets published from this account earlier today without our authorization,” they reported via Twitter. Unfortunately, not everyone seems to realize that not all content can be trusted.

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Topics: content curation, Machine Learning, Information Management, AI, Fake News, IT Security, Cybersecurity

Machine Learning in Searches for Business Information

by Leonard Hancock on January 27, 2017

How Search Engines Are Increasingly Driven By Machine Learning


Machine learning is an application of artificial intelligence (AI) expected to proliferate even further throughout the business world in 2017.  When specific, rule-based algorithms are impossible or ineffective, machine learning is advantageous - smart machines can utilize data by teaching themselves to improve from it. Machine learning’s versatility is such that almost any process could be improved by it. When dealing with business information, maybe no process is more  important than search tools, an area where machine learning has been truly revolutionary.

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Topics: Machine Learning, Business Information, AI, Information Portals, Artifical Intelligence, Automation, Search Engines, Google Search, RankBrain, Deep Learning

How Business Information Can Support Artificial Intelligence

by Leonard Hancock on January 18, 2017

Can Informing Workers Ease the Implementation of AI?


It is always a challenge for companies to embrace investment in new technologies. Many have recently funded new IT systems, and are understandably reluctant to abandon these investments for what they perceive as passing trends. But artificial intelligence (AI) and automation are not passing trends, and those who are able to evaluate new advances in a business context will be better positioned for success.

AI and automation have management teams scrambling to keep up with the latest advances in productivity, and workers struggling to develop greater proficiency. For both groups, knowledge is key. Business information and the technologies to support it are valuable tools for getting buy-in from employees as AI and automation are implemented.

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Topics: Machine Learning, Business Information, AI, Information Portals, Artifical Intelligence, Automation

New BCBS Resource Leverages Data Analytics, GIS Tools to Map Wellness

by Kari Walgran on December 19, 2016

Learning from BCBS's Health Index about big data trends in the healthcare industry.

Health Index

Blue Cross Blue Shield recently released its Health Index, an interactive, data-based tool that measures health and wellness across the United States.

The Health Index combines GIS tools with de-identified member data from millions of BCBS members, resulting in a searchable, interactive map showing health scores for every county in the nation.

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Topics: Digital Health, Healthcare Trends, Big Data

Analyzing the Aggregators: The Internet Resources that Save Time

by Patty Wood on December 14, 2016

Researchers are always seeking ways to speed up research; here are some helpful aggregator sources that are available on the research landscape now.


With busy information professionals trying to search for multiple data sets, having one powerful aggregator tool to use instead of 10 separate tools may be quite welcome. With the right collection of go-to aggregator resources, a researcher may find that the research process runs more quickly and efficiently. Such tools are becoming more common now, offering single dashboards and portals that can extract data from hundreds, if not thousands, of sources.

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Topics: content distribution, Information Management, Data Analytics

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Welcome to the InfoDesk Blog, "Information Happens" where we feature articles, company news, including new products/services, webinars, white papers and more.

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