David Bodanis

Viral Statistics

Big Data: A Revolution That Will Transform How We Live, Work and Think

By

John Murray 242pp £20 order from our bookshop

Most books about the internet are written by excitable youngsters who inhabit the bodies of middle-aged men. This one is different, for the authors have identified one of the very rare moments when a fundamental shift in government, business and even our view of causality is taking place.

The reason ‘Big Data’ is so important is that, unlike email or even Facebook, it’s not just a mechanism that lets us do, albeit more efficiently, what we were always going to do – send messages, say, or link with friends. Instead, it’s more like the invention of the microscope, or financial accounting, or time-lapse photography: it’s a new tool that allows us to see activities hitherto invisible to human awareness.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • Whom did Picasso label a 'bristly pig'? Read Rosalind P Blakesley's review of The Collector by Natalya Semenova to… ,
    • Alexandra Gajda on Anna Beer's new biography, Patriot or Traitor: The Life and Death of Sir Walter Ralegh ,
    • Mark Lawson reviews @jonathancoe's Middle England - The Rotters' Club for our Brexit age. ,
    • 'Behind every book that is published lies ... a haunted landscape, populated by the ghosts of things written and ex… ,
    • 'We once more live in a great age of dragon invention' Here's Tom Shippey on Martin Arnold's The Dragon ,
    • RT : Man at the q&a part of the book panel: Don't say it Don't say it Don't say it Don't say it Don't say it Don't s… ,
    • Here's @epkaufm's Whiteshift, reviewed in this month's magazine by ,