Stephen Baker's The Numerati

I went to the library the other day and picked up a copy of Stephen Baker’s The Numerati, which I first wrote about here.

The book is organized into seven chapters which describe ways that data is being analyzed in mass quantities: Worker, Shopper, Voter, Blogger, Terrorist, Patient, and Lover.

You’d think that Lover would be the most interesting but it had the least substance; Voter (about Josh Gotbaum of Spotlight Analysis) was by far the most interesting chapter.

The Numerati was such a quick read that I finished it in just a few short disappointing hours.

I felt Baker was stretching to fill out his book with examples of how mathematicians are dangerously invading our privacy by quantifying and analyzing our lives.

Still, it was entertaining; just keep your expectations low.


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