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Articles on Data

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Differential privacy lets organizations collect people’s data while protecting their privacy, but it’s not foolproof. imaginima/E+ via Getty Images

People want data privacy but don’t always know what they’re getting

Differential privacy lets people to share data anonymously, but people need to know more about it to make informed decisions.
Computer algorithms can involve complicated math, but the concept of an algorithm is simple. Hill Street Studios/DigitalVision via Getty Images

What is an algorithm? How computers know what to do with data

A close look at how you decide what clothes to put on in the morning can help you understand how computers work.
Accurate address data is vital for public services, including health monitoring. TippaPatt/Shutterstock

South Africa needs a national database of addresses: how it could be done

Address data are maintained in silos at different government entities. There is limited coordination and adherence to international standards; good practice is lacking around information management.
The coronavirus pandemic has resulted in increased adoption of communication and network technologies. (Shutterstock)

Digital technologies will help build resilient communities after the coronavirus pandemic

Internet technologies and the devices that enable information access and transfer are useful in crisis management. Accessing these readily available digital technologies can help community resiliency.
Health care workers use a nasal swab to test a person for COVID-19 in Pembroke Park, Florida. Joe Raedle/Getty Images News via Getty Images

Video: What the huge COVID-19 testing undercount in the US means

A recent report by the CDC estimated that the true number of COVID-19 cases in the US could be six to 24 times more than the number of confirmed cases. A public health scholar explains the implications.
Public data is vital to the functioning of a democracy. Witthaya Prasongsin / Getty Images

Video: Who controls pandemic data?

A White House decision to take over collection of COVID-19 data from the CDC sparked worries over political interference. A public data expert talks about the importance of transparent public data.
Artificial systems use reams of data to get a better profiles of individuals.

AI could help solve the privacy problems it has created

Artificial intelligence insatiable data needs has encouraged the mass collection of personal data, placing privacy at risk. But AI can help solve the very problem it creates.
Nurses and other health care workers in New York mourned colleagues who have died during the outbreak of the novel coronavirus. Johannes Eisele/AFP/Getty Images

Coronavirus deaths in San Francisco vs. New York: What causes such big differences in cities’ tolls?

Why one city suffers significantly more deaths than another isn't always obvious. A simple experiment shows how failing to consider certain factors can point policy makers in the wrong direction.

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