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Friday, November 14, 2014

Google includes Flu Trend Data

Interesting.  Perhaps an admission that these kinds of patterns cannot be derived this way.  Recall we were also involved in a related project, which looked at retail pharma sales to predict bioterrorism.

" ... Finding that aggregate Web searches alone cannot provide an accurate assessment of where the flu has struck and its severity, Google will take into account data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in its Google Flu Trends model. .... The Google tool is based on the premise that people turn to the Web when they are searching for information on the flu, making certain search terms good indicators of flu levels. The indicators of flu activity were also provided faster by Google than the weekly reports of the CDC. ... " 

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