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Analytics Magazine

Current Issue

Internet of Things

January/February 2017
Digital Edition


The historically secretive CIA is moving toward open information sharing with other agencies and the public. Photo Courtesy of | ruskpp

The CIA’s new transparency

The CIA wants the public to know much more about what it’s doing, and analytics plays a key role in the agency’s new approach. This development is not just a few pronouncements to build public support, but a major change in how the CIA and other intelligence agencies will function. Surprising as this may seem to long-time watchers of the intelligence community, the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) is serious about changing its policies, practices and organizational structure, trying to move toward open information sharing with other agencies and the public. The intelligence community’s mission is expanding from keeping and collecting secrets to winning at information warfare. Disseminating the story the U.S. wants told is emerging as a key mission. Read more →

There’s often little or incomplete measurement of whether promotions actually work. Photo Courtesy of | igorvkv

Driving smarter decisions on pricing, promotion

The consumer goods industry thrived for years on its ability to please the average shopper. From toothpaste to soap powder, it knew how to give people what they wanted – and how to sweeten the purchase with the right price, a tempting discount or a great deal. But for the last decade the sector has struggled to grow – both in terms of revenues and margins. The world has changed, and consumer goods companies have – by and large – found it hard to adapt. Brand loyalty is harder to come by, as more people shop at discounters or go online for the best deals. Digital disruption has opened the market to new companies with different business models. Recent EY research found 45 percent of companies in the industry were struggling to keep pace with changing consumer needs and behaviors. Read more →

The core of Industry 4.0 is connected, intelligent products that communicate with users or other products. Photo Courtesy of | aimage

Industrie 4.0: Analytics everywhere

Through advances such as big data and the Internet of Things (IoT), the field of analytics has been growing by leaps and bounds. However, much of the focus, particularly in the United States, has been in the consumer (i.e., business-to-consumer, or B2C) market. Indeed, much of the innovation coming out of Silicon Valley, and from disruptive digital companies with new business models and no legacy infrastructure to contend with, remains in the context of personalization and the consumer experience. Read more →

Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. As one employee put it, Google is a “candy store” for O.R. practitioners (inset). Source: Google

Analytics @ Google

The mission of Google, Inc. is “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.” This has spawned efforts as diverse as optical fiber to the home (gFiber), longevity research (Calico), smart home automation (Nest), YouTube, glucose-detecting contact lenses (Verily), self-driving cars and many others. Such broad-reaching innovations are possible due to robust search and ads businesses. Read more →

The IoT has ushered in an entirely new way of discovering new patterns such as edge, or “fog,” computing. Photo Courtesy of | Shawn Hempel

IoT unleashes endless business opportunities

Imagine a sensor inside an offshore drilling rig. The sensor checks for damage to a critical valve. To do so, the sensor regulates pressure in the oil well 7,000 feet below the ocean’s surface. This sensor generates data that might have gone unnoticed half a decade ago. Back then, the rig operator had no way to tap into this ground-level information. That’s not the case anymore. With the right technology, organizations can now find everyday data instantly, no matter where it is created – right away, on the fly – exactly when this data is most useful. Read more →

IoT devices excel at sensing, alerting, augmenting reality and generally interacting fluidly with the wearer or user. Photo Courtesy of | everythingpossible

BPM empowering IoT business users

IoT (Internet of Things) devices have become increasingly popular in recent years. They are all around us – from fitness trackers on our wrists to smart thermostats in our homes – and adoption will only continue to grow in the coming years. In fact, Gartner, Inc. reported that 5.5 million new things were connected in 2016 alone, upping the total of connected things worldwide to 6.4 billion, a 30 percent increase from 2015. Gartner projects we will reach 20.8 billion by 2020. Read more →

To fully appreciate Ada Lovelace’s contribution, we would need to look at it from a historical perspective.

Ada Lovelace: ‘poetical scientist’

Once upon a time, in a kingdom far, far away, a blue-blooded girl was born with one of the most well-known family names in history. Her mother hated her father so much that her mother decided to nurture this little girl as everything opposite to what her father stood for: passion, romance, poetry. And so the mother taught her daughter science, mathematics and logic. The mother would not even let the girl see any portrait of her father till the age of 20! Read more →


ANALYZE THIS! Carefully considering some uncomfortable scenarios

I’ve spent the last few months working with the Human Rights Data Analysis Group. HRDAG has historically focused on unstable regions around the world, scientifically examining data captured by local institutions and grassroots activists to try to discern the truth about the volume and patterns of human rights violations [1]. My work there has been focused on data from Colombia. Over the past several years, HRDAG has done several projects on Colombia, examining deaths, disappearances, torture, sexual violence and violence against union members during the longstanding conflict between armed rebels, criminal organizations and the Colombian government. Read more →

Five-Minute Analyst: The force is strong with correspondence analysis

This article is going to do two things I’ve never done before: first is to include a co-author, and second is to write about the same topic using (almost) the same data. To recap, in “The Force Awakens,” Kylo Ren fears that he will succumb to the light because he is not as dark as his hero, Darth Vader. We considered this problem in July 2016 using “Darkside Envelopment Analysis.” We repeat the data used as Table 1 (spoiler alert) slightly updated to reflect events of “Rogue One.” Read more →

Forum: Revisiting advertising effectiveness

Does advertising work? Few will deny that advertising plays an important role in building awareness. The idiom, “out of sight, out of mind,” speaks to the importance of being seen in order to even be thought of. Looking back over the years, however, there’s a strong case to be made that advertising as we know it has been a mixed bag financially. And while emerging forms of advertising improve our ability to target, modern channels are being questioned just as much as traditional media in terms of overall effectiveness. What appears to be certain is, as consumers have greater access to information, the link between an ad’s effectiveness and the intrinsic “compellingness” of what’s advertised is likely to increase. Read more →

Healthcare Analytics: The future of U.S. healthcare analytics

The 2016 election is a watershed moment for the U.S. healthcare industry. Any presidential election and change of guards come with changes in policies. It happened in 2008 when President Obama was sworn into the office. That led to the establishment of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) or Obamacare. To bend the cost curve, which was swinging up uncontrollably, lawmakers passed a very comprehensive legislative change in U.S. healthcare that expanded insurance coverage for 20 million Americans through Medicaid expansion and the establishment of health information exchanges. Read more →

Inside Story – IoT: The next gen

While techies debate the state of the Internet of Things and its potential to transform the way we interact with almost everything, there’s little doubt that the IoT will continue to be a topic of great interest throughout the worldwide analytics community and beyond for many years to come. Read more →









Analytics Blog

Electoral College put to the math test

With the campaign two months behind us and the inauguration of Donald Trump two days away, isn’t it time to put the 2016 U.S. presidential election to bed and focus on issues that have yet to be decided? Of course not.


Syngenta transforms global logistics with digital operating model

Syngenta, a leading global agriculture company, has collaborated with Accenture to design and implement a new digital logistics operating model across all modes of transportation, including sea and air freight globally and road freight in North America and Europe. The model will enable Syngenta to more effectively manage increasingly complex logistics networks and operations with lower costs and higher service performance. Read more →

Metro areas with the best, worst markets for STEM workers

With STEM jobs expected to grow 1.7 times faster than non-STEM professions in the coming years, the personal-finance website WalletHub followed up on its “Best & Worst Cities to Find a Job” report with an in-depth analysis of 2017’s “Best & Worst Metro Areas for STEM Professionals.” Read more →




2017 INFORMS Business Analytics Conference
April 2-4, 2017, Las Vegas

2017 INFORMS Healthcare Conference
July 26-28, 2017, Rotterdam, the Netherlands


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