Carly Fiorina, former chairperson of Hewlett Packard, clearly spelled out the objective for modern data analytics projects: “The goal is to turn data into information, and information into insight.” In today’s business, information drives business decisions and survival. As a result, What is Data Analytics is a question that has become highly relevant now. This blog presents data analytics projects in five areas of our life. These data analytics applications hold great promise for improving the quality of human life. Data analytics affects almost every area of business and living, and is key to both your professional and personal life.
5 data analytics projects that have demonstrated encouraging results.
- Save a life-sustaining natural resource—Water
The former US secretary of state, Hillary Clinton, aptly stated, “Water security for us is a matter of economic security, human security, and national security, because we see potential for increasing unrest, conflicts, and instability over water.” She made this observation on March 22, 2011, the World Water Day.
Transparent Technologies, Inc., a company providing automatic meter reading solutions (AMR), embarked on a project to empower water consumers with useful information.
In this project, data analytics has been used to
- Monitor 100,000 water meters and collate data from each meter
- Analyze more than 250 million records to gain insights on water usage
- Support up to 500,000 water meters
- Provide the infrastructure and analytics to water utilities to save water and maximize profits
This project has been implemented using Microsoft Azure. Event Hubs technology captured data from the waters meters. Then, Azure Stream Analytics compared the captured information with a reference model to flag consumption anomalies in real-time. In this project, 250+ million records are analyzed annually, with the capacity to process 10x more. Utilities companies now have a cloud-based, low-cost option that saves billions of gallons of precious water every year. Because of this project, sources of water wastage are being quickly identified and some large wasters even fined.
2. A better life through proven traffic management
Life is too short to be stuck in a traffic jam. More time in traffic means lesser time with your loved ones, higher exposure to pollution, and considerably higher levels of stress.
Microsoft Azure has been used in Brazil to predict traffic effectively. In this implementation
- Algorithms process huge volumes of traffic data for minute-by-minute traffic predictions
- Historic and current data are analyzed to arrive at actionable insights
- Use the tools the drivers use such as maps and social networks to chalk out the best routes
- A traffic prediction accuracy of up to 90% is possible
Analyzing terabytes of data, Microsoft Azure ensures reliable predictions. This predictive model has been tested in some of the largest cities of the world, which include New York, Los Angeles, London, and Chicago. Traffic planners use this model to prevent traffic snarls, especially during special events and other disruptions.
3. Data analytics enhances success rates in the entertainment industry
The entertainment industry grapples with a high risk of failure. Audiences can be fickle. A project involving 4000 movies and 4420 actors was carried out to analyze the factors driving the success of a movie. The project used several discrete algorithms and tools to analyze the collected data.
Among many other factors, this project analyzed
- The main actors involved, tenure in the industry, and total career earnings
- Movie Genre
- The team involved in making a movie and their interactions
- Keywords associated with movies and team conversations
- When a movie was released, including release dates
The project used social media information and movie websites like IMDB to gather copious data. Along with several analyses, regression analysis with the LASSO algorithm was carried out to identify success factors. The top 5 factors affecting the success of a movie were related to star power. The analysis also found that movies released in winter did better than those released in summer. So did movies with the same genre of a successful movie in the preceding year.
4. Improving the lives of children through data analytics applications:
Education is often considered the real foundation for a great future. Moreover, the education level in a society decides its harmony and prosperity. Victor Hugo, the legendary French poet and novelist, summed it up correctly saying, “He who opens a school door, closes a prison.”
Microsoft Azure and Power BI tools were used in public schools to
- Quickly access relevant information through data visualization
- Collect the right data for analyses
- Track data school-, staff-, and student-wise
- Collate classroom data quickly to evaluate performance of each class
As an outcome of this project, St. Lucie Public Schools, Florida has successfully turned around its low graduation rates. Moreover, dropout rates have also seen a marked reduction after achieving a drastic decrease in out-of-school suspensions. In this project, analytics provides information to arrive at workable decisions for improved learning outcomes.
5. Data analytics is securing our food sources
The importance of food in our lives cannot be overstated. George Bernard Shaw said rightly, “There is no love sincerer than the love of food.”
Data analytics projects have been used successfully to
- Capture data from third-party sensors to arrive at information critical to farming
- Use Microsoft Azure to extract instantaneous insights from weather and farm data
- Push-out actionable insights to farmers on their mobile devices
The Yield, an Australian agtech company, is using Microsoft analytics to process data from sensors to help farmers. Small changes in weather conditions can prove disastrous for these farmers. The Yield carries out real-time predictive analysis of weather and water-related data stored in the Cloud. This agtech is also helping Australian farmers calculate the optimal schedule and amount of water to be used in a country known for its water shortages. In addition, some farmers claim reducing tons of produce wastage based on analytics delivered by this company. The data analytics projects presented in this blog clearly answer the important question: What is data analytics?
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