The power of data mining

KDD is the largest and best data minIng conference. This year it is held in the beautiful San Diego. About 1000 people from both Academia and industry attended. The largest presence is Google, Yahoo!, IBM and Microsoft. In addition, EBay, Amazon, Twitter, Facebook are all present. Besides these Internet companies, traditional companies like GE, Siemens, GM, Ford, American Airline, and Jack in the box are also present. Many government agencies are also here: NASA, Department of Defense, just name a few.

What bring all of these diverse organizations together is the power of data mining. In his invited talk, VP marketing of Caesar Entertainment talked about how his company uses patterns discovered from data to support hotel and casino operation. Another invited speaker, talked about helping police to identify crime hotspot in the city. A grocery chain talked about using data mining to manage inventory and product promotion.

Behind all of these commercial applications is solid science, namely mathematics and statistics theories. In addition, it is solid computer science where all algorithms are subject to analysis on computational complexity and evaluated on public datasets.

Twitter researchers are talking about automatically detecting topic with data stream.