Friday, December 23, 2011

Data mining for science and marketing

Researchers at Google and the U. S. Centers for Disease Control discovered a correlation between an index they compiled based on health related search terms and the incidence of flu recorded by the CDC.

Vicks has taken it a step further by sending ads for a safe home thermometer to mothers in high flu regions of the country. The ads offer the thermometer and give the location of nearby stores that carry it.

Is this a spooky invasion of privacy or targeted delivery of relevant information?