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Dataclysm: Who We Are (When We Think No One's Looking)
 
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Dataclysm: Who We Are (When We Think No One's Looking) [Format Kindle]

Christian Rudder

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

"Most data-hyping books are vapor and slogans. This one has the real stuff: actual data and actual analysis taking place on the page. That’s something to be praised, loudly and at length. Praiseworthy, too, is Rudder’s writing, which is consistently zingy and mercifully free of Silicon Valley business gabble."
Jordan Ellenberg, Washington Post

"There's another side of Big Data you haven't seen—not the one that promised to use our digital world to our advantage to optimize, monetize, or systematize every last part our lives. It's the big data that rears its ugly head and tells us what we don't want to know. And that, as Christian Rudder demonstrates in his new book, Dataclysm, is perhaps an equally worthwhile pursuit. Before we heighten the human experience, we should understand it first."
—TIME

"Dataclysm is a well-written and funny look at what the numbers reveal about human behavior in the age of social media. It’s both profound and a bit disturbing, because, sad to say, we’re generally not the kind of people we like to think — or say — we are."
—Salon

"For all its data and its seemingly dating-specific focus, Dataclysm tells the story set forth by the book's subtitle, in an entertaining and accessible way. Informative, eye-opening, and (gasp) fun to read. Even if you’re not a giant stat head."
Grantland

"[Rudder] doesn’t wring or clap his hands over the big-data phenomenon (see N.S.A., Google ads, that sneaky Fitbit) so much as plunge them into big data and attempt to pull strange creatures from the murky depths." 
The New Yorker

"Compulsively readable — including for those with no particular affinity for numbers in and of themselves — and surprisingly personal. Starting with aggregates, Rudder posits, we can zoom in on the details of how we live, love, fight, work, play, and age; from numbers, we can derive narrative. There are few characters in the book, and few anecdotes — but the human story resounds throughout."
Refinery29

"Dataclysm is all about what we can learn about human minds and hearts by analyzing the massive ongoing experiment that is the internet."
—Forbes

"The book reads as if it's written (well) by a curious child whose parents beg him or her to stop asking "what-if" questions. Rudder examines the data of the website he helped create with unwavering curiosity. Every turn presents new questions to be answered, and he happily heads down the rabbit hole to resolve them."
—U.S. News

"This is the best book that I've read on data in years, perhaps ever. If you want to understand how data is affecting the present and what it portends for the future, buy it now."
—Huffington Post

"Studying human behavior is a little like exploring a jungle: it's messy, hard, and easy to lose your way. But Christian Rudder is a consummate guide, revealing essential truths about who we are. Big Data has never been so fun."
—Dan Ariely, author of Predictably Irrational
 
"Dataclysm is a book full of juicy secrets—secrets about who we love, what we crave, why we like, and how we change each other’s minds and lives, often without even knowing it. Christian Rudder makes this mathematical narrative of our culture fun to read and even more fun to discuss: You will find yourself sharing these intriguing data-driven revelations with everyone you know."
—Jane McGonigal, author of Reality Is Broken
 
"In the first few pages of Dataclysm, Christian Rudder uses massive amounts of actual behavioral data to prove what I always believed in my heart: Belle and Sebastian is the whitest band ever. It only gets better from there."
—Aziz Ansari

"It’s unheard of for a book about Big Data to read like a guilty pleasure, but Dataclysm does. It’s a fascinating, almost voyeuristic look at who we really are and what we really want."
—Steven Strogatz, Schurman Professor of Applied Mathematics, Cornell University, author of The Joy of x

"Smart, revealing, and sometimes sobering, Dataclysm affirms what we probably suspected in our darker moments: When it comes to romance, what we say we want isn't what will actually make us happy. Christian Rudder has tapped the tremendous wealth of data that the Internet offers to tease out thoughts on topics like beauty and race that most of us wouldn’t cop to publicly. It's a riveting read, and Rudder is an affable and humane guide."
—Adelle Waldman, author of The Love Affairs of Nathaniel P.

"Christian Rudder has written a funny and profound book about important issues. Race, love, sex—you name it. Are we the sum of the data we produce? Read this book immediately and see if you can answer the question."
—Errol Morris

"Big Data can be like a 3D movie without 3D glasses—you know there's a lot going on but you're mainly just disoriented. We should feel fortunate to have an interpreter as skilled (and funny) as Christian Rudder. Dataclysm is filled with insights that boil down Big Data into byte-sized revelations."
—Michael Norton, Harvard Business School, coauthor of Happy Money

"With a zest for both the profound and the wacky, Rudder demonstrates how the information we provide individually tells a vast deal about who we are collectively. A visually engaging read and a fascinating topic make this a great choice not just for followers of Nate Silver and fans of infographics, but for just about anyone who, by participating in online activity, has contributed to the data set."
—Library Journal

"Demographers, entrepreneurs, students of history and sociology, and ordinary citizens alike will find plenty of provocations and, yes, much data in Rudder's well-argued, revealing pages."
—Kirkus Reviews



From the Hardcover edition.

Présentation de l'éditeur

A New York Times Bestseller

An audacious, irreverent investigation of human behavior—and a first look at a revolution in the making

 
Our personal data has been used to spy on us, hire and fire us, and sell us stuff we don’t need. In Dataclysm, Christian Rudder uses it to show us who we truly are.
 
For centuries, we’ve relied on polling or small-scale lab experiments to study human behavior. Today, a new approach is possible. As we live more of our lives online, researchers can finally observe us directly, in vast numbers, and without filters. Data scientists have become the new demographers.
 
In this daring and original book, Rudder explains how Facebook "likes" can predict, with surprising accuracy, a person’s sexual orientation and even intelligence; how attractive women receive exponentially more interview requests; and why you must have haters to be hot. He charts the rise and fall of America’s most reviled word through Google Search and examines the new dynamics of collaborative rage on Twitter. He shows how people express themselves, both privately and publicly. What is the least Asian thing you can say? Do people bathe more in Vermont or New Jersey? What do black women think about Simon & Garfunkel? (Hint: they don’t think about Simon & Garfunkel.) Rudder also traces human migration over time, showing how groups of people move from certain small towns to the same big cities across the globe. And he grapples with the challenge of maintaining privacy in a world where these explorations are possible.
 
Visually arresting and full of wit and insight, Dataclysm is a new way of seeing ourselves—a brilliant alchemy, in which math is made human and numbers become the narrative of our time.


From the Hardcover edition.

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Amazon.com: 4.3 étoiles sur 5  71 commentaires
40 internautes sur 47 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 This is going to be a very popular book. 29 juillet 2014
Par Gavin Scott - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié|Commentaire client Vine pour produit gratuit (De quoi s'agit-il?)
This book may be to Data Science and Big Data what Freakonomics was to Economics.

The author is one of the founders of the dating web site OKCupid and has spent a lot of time sifting through the vast amount of data collected by user interactions with their website and each other, and he uses this wealth of personal and private information to explore what it can tell us about human social behavior.

The writing is excellent and it is a very fun read (I was hooked by the second page of the introduction, finished it in a couple sittings, and was never bored).

There's lots of information in this book that will make you think, and a lot worth talking about more. I think it's at its best in the first part where the theme is "things that bring us together" and he talks about statistics relating to how people find each other on his dating site. In the second part of the book "what pulls us apart" he deals with issues like race and what his data shows about the prevalence of racism in American society, as well as the internet's capacity for rage. The last part of the book "what makes us who we are" continues with the relationships theme as he investigates a few more racial as well as gay and bi-sexual issues before covering a few miscellaneous topics like comparing the kind of uses of this data he makes and his vision of using it for good compared to things like marketing and government spying.

People who consider themselves Data Scientists may be bothered by the fact that he does not go into much formal detail and actually few of his analyses require any fancy math or a PhD in anything.

It's a book that I can strongly recommend to anyone, both as a fascinating look into human behavior as well as an introduction to the sort of things that web sites are doing with all that data they collect on you, and as inspiration for those who aspire to the new discipline of Data Science, both in terms of the sort of things you can accomplish as well as some of the moral and ethical issues involved.

Probably the most interesting and thought-provoking book I've read in a long time.

G.
9 internautes sur 10 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A smart book on many things. Well conceived, elegantly written. 19 septembre 2014
Par Dr. Chuck Chakrapani - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
This is a smart book on many subjects.

This is a smart book on big data. Not because it tells us all that there is know about big data but it shows us how big data can do things that small data cannot. Big data derived from social media can relate what a person says to what a person does. Would we really have guessed that women judge men’s looks more harshly than men do about women’s? While men think that about 50% women have above average looks, women think only one guy in six looks “above average”.

This is a smart book data analysis. Not because there are no better books on the subject but Christian Rudder not only understands statistics well but can communicate it with elegance and clarity. For example, his description of what variance is, what it means and how it can lead to extraordinary conclusions like ‘having a small flaw is better than being perfect and so be yourself’ is so far removed from the mechanical way in which statistics is taught in schools and universities, you can’t but admire the ease with which Rudder takes the reader from simple data analysis to complex generalizations.

This is a smart book on research. Not because it teaches you how to do research but because it presents data that contradict current research findings. You will read here findings about race which you will not find anywhere else. If you are skeptical of the current social and psychological research, especially that comes out of the academe which is almost exclusively based convenience sample of a limited section of the society (WEIRD sample- White, Educated, Industrialized, Rich and Democratic), Dataclysm will confirm that your skepticism of academic research is well founded.

This is smart book on privacy. Not because it is polemical about privacy but it shows how we trade off privacy for convenience and its implications. Its value is in pointing out what exactly in happening to our privacy. You may not follow Rudder in never posting your children’s pictures online, but you may become more cautious about being careless about your privacy

This is a smart book on graphic presentation. Not because you will know a lot about graphic presentation after reading this book but because, if you are tired of seeing attractive but silly graphs that litter newspapers, journals and books, here you will find graphs that are deceptively simple looking yet communicate significant conclusions very effectively.

I can go on. But if you are not convinced by now that this is an elegantly conceived book, my adding more will not convince you either. This is not a definitive book on any one subject but a smart book on many subjects. Well conceived and well written.
20 internautes sur 25 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Big Data Yields Small Insights 6 août 2014
Par W. A. Carpenter - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié|Commentaire client Vine pour produit gratuit (De quoi s'agit-il?)
Christian Rudder, one of the founders of the dating service OkCupid and a Harvard trained mathematician, offers us insights from some really big social media data bases. Using analytic techniques to look at overall trends, rather than predictions about individuals, he demonstrates an ethical way to use all of the data that is collected on people who do Google searches, use dating sites, tweet on Twitter, and "friend" people on Facebook.

The results are not always dramatic or interesting, but it is amazing how much can be determined from the on-line behavior of millions of people. He offers, for example, a very credible estimate of the percentage of the population that is gay. He also has an interesting analysis of how people reacted when it became clear that Obama was going to be our first black president.

The only reason I did not give this book five stars is due to the author's tendency to throw in unnecessary profanity and sarcastic comments. I think he intended these to be humorous, in at least some cases, but I found them distracting interruptions in the flow of an otherwise fine book.

Rudder has a number of really wonderful graphs in the book, showing the trends in the data sets. These are inspired by the work of Edward Tufte - see The Visual Display of Quantitative Information for example - and he could not have chosen a better role model. One of the most interesting parts of the book, to this geeky reader, was his final Note on Data which should be the standard that all researchers in this type of analysis.
13 internautes sur 17 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
2.0 étoiles sur 5 Unintentially hilarious writing not worth your time 16 septembre 2014
Par John M. Grohol - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
Sadly, this is one of the most unintentionally hilarious books I've read in awhile.

Meant to be some sort of cross between Gladwell and Ariely, Rudder's work has none of the underlying "bigger picture" themes, and proudly trots out mundane observations in lieu of actual insight. The results of his so-called data "experiments" are too often just plain uninteresting and like, "Umm, yeah, we already knew that. Psychological research showed that two decades ago." I was often asking myself, "Why is this even in this book? It's a waste of my time."

There are limitations to his data which he glosses over (and sometimes doesn't even mention). His dataset is a biased sample, and he's never published a single peer-reviewed study (which is odd thing for a researcher not to have done). The latter would give his authorship the foundation one typically looks for when someone is talking about "experiments" and "research." But then again, this is what I would expect from an individual with a bachelor's degree who's apparently never taken a single course in ethics or human subjects research.

And that's the core of the problem with Rudder's work. As he proclaimed on his website at the end of July, he's been conducting human subjects research on OKCupid without bothering to get any customers' explicit informed consent. He's never run any of his "experiments" in front of an IRB. And he seems oblivious as to the ethics of supposedly providing a service to people, but then manipulating the results of that service for his own experimental purposes (all the while not telling anyone he was doing so).

It might have been forgiven if the results of such experiments resulted in deep new insights or understanding of people's online behavior. Instead, what we have here is the equivalent of a bunch of college term papers thrown together in one volume that is posing as a thoughtful book about "who we are." A book that uses Wikipedia as its primary sourcing material tells you volumes about the shallowness of the content contained therein. If you're looking for the usual research citations you'd expect in a work of this nature, you'll be disappointed.

This book did not change the way I saw myself, or my own understanding of online behavior. What it changed was my perception of the author and how bad research can be spun into some sort of ground-breaking effort. It's pop science at its worst, conducted by someone who's grasp of research is apparently as poor as his disjointed, uneven and brainless writing.
41 internautes sur 57 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Some Interesting Snippets of Data 18 août 2014
Par Paul Cassel - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié|Commentaire client Vine pour produit gratuit (De quoi s'agit-il?)
The author implies that this book presents data which will change the way we see ourselves. Not true. Instead, what we have here are snippets of often interesting but, for the most part, unrelated bits of data sourced variously and without mention of method.

There are two issues with the data itself. It's not cohesive. That is, the author doesn't drive toward a point or perform research. Instead he samples this or that he apparently either finds interesting himself or he thinks the readers will enjoy absorbing. Some of the data is worth thinking about or discussing around the water cooler tomorrow at work. The other issue is the interpretation the author puts on the data or the lack of it or something or other.

A good deal of the data is taken from the dating site, OKCupid.com which the author started along with two others. Any person who's taken Statistics 101 can tell you that this sample has a few issues from self-section to it not representing humanity as a whole. For example, you can be well assured that no happily married folks had anything to do with these data sets. Aren't happily married people part of `humanity'?

The second issue starts with the author seeming to make a good deal out of nothing. In one chart with frequency of words used to describe oneself cross tabbed with race, he finds Hispanic males rarely describe themselves as having a southern accent, having blue eyes or being a redneck. I believe the author's data here, but did I need to see this chart to know these things?

In another chart, how men rate women's looks is cross tabbed by women's race. The chart shows that black women are, and are by far, rated as less good looking than Asian, Latina or white women. So what do we take from that? Well, I can think of several things other than maybe your first blush thought.

Maybe good looking black women are so popular that they don't need to go to OKCupid.com to find their dates. Maybe black women take crummy photos of themselves. Maybe the nature of OKCupid shows black women's thumbnail pictures up poorly. I can go on. Here, again, I believe the author's data but I don't see the reason it was published.

The final part of the book is a well-considered and well expressed diatribe against the war on privacy being waged by several entities and abetted by your behavior online. Your behavior with your cell phone, OnStar equipped car and debit card are also contributors among other things. While the author laments this loss of privacy as if it's a future event, I have news for you: that ship has sailed.

Aside from some amazingly poorly worded personal musings, the expositional writing acceptable if not elegant. Overall worth a read but not a breakthrough of any sort.
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