The Jewish community should be more numbers-driven, but is to small to use Big Data techniques.
Jewish Week Online Columnist
On May 1, after a 90-day review ordered by President Obama, the White House released a 79-page report on "Big Data", a catchphrase that has become exceedingly popular over the last several years to refer to the copious amounts of information about us and our habits that are being collected, stored and analyzed with new digital technologies. It's why Amazon tried to sell me a 5-pound box of matzah when I purchased a new seder plate a couple months ago. The theory is that if we collect enough information, and have the will and the expertise to properly analyze it, then we'll be able to create all sorts of new efficiencies, improve our behaviors and make better decisions for ourselves and our organizations.
Lost amidst the frenzy of media coverage over the past few months about government monitoring of personal data were revelations about the transformative effect of Big Data on the election of Barrack Obama in 2012. A secret effort was established by the campaign involving dozens of young experts in analytics and behavioral science working up to 16 hours a day in a windowless room called "the cave" at the Obama headquarters in Chicago.