1. Critically think about and argue the topic of using data mining by corporations such as grocery and department stores to find patterns in the way people buy goods. In doing this, stores hope to influence what shoppers buy and when. Consider this issue from as many different perspectives as possible (consumer and store owners may not be the only one’s here) and provide some evidence backing up your observations.
Data mining, or the drawing out of hidden predictive information from large databases, is a powerful new technology with great potential to help companies focus on the most important information in their data warehouses. Data mining tools predict future trends and behaviors, allowing businesses to make proactive, knowledge-driven decisions or discovering new patterns from large data sets involving methods at the intersection of artificial intelligence, machine learning, statistics and database systems.
The data companies or people usually have is often vast, and noisy, meaning that it’s imprecise and the data structure is complex and all over the place. This is where a statistical technique would not succeed, so data mining is the solution. Of course when the actual mining occurs, you have issues such as relevance, algorithm efficiency, size, and complexity. In the end, this should produce valid, useful, and understandable results.
The advantages of data mining of course, are pretty apparent. This helps companies succeed in projecting things like sales, losses, and customer trends. And with a dwindling economy, this technique can keep businesses on their feet.
And of course, with data mining disadvantages come as well. Social networking sites like Facebook are specific targets to marketing companies nowadays. This can be a nuisance because of personal information, privacy, friends, family… The list goes on.
The main concern with data mining would be that companies need to realize the lines in which some cross, and that because of this, can be potentially hurting their customer base. Personally, I believe there should be some sort of regulatory terms that some of these companies should abide by, but until then, keep an eye out and be smart with who you share your personal information.
Attached is a short video describing data mining.