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Recorded Future is a startup technology company that described itself as a "temporal analytics engine." It tries to uncover and analyze very faint signals, basically in order to predict the future. It's backed by Google Ventures and the data-loving VC firm IA Ventures .
Last time I wrote about the social panopticon , I was being tongue in cheek. But today I don my tinfoil hat for real to bring you the Danger Room story of Recorded Future, a company being funded by a CIA research branch and Google to mine publicly available data (including social networking data) for event prediction. If you haven't read it, go do that now. I'll be here when you get back.
By NOAH SHACHTMAN July 30, 2010 The investment arms of the CIA and Google are both backing a company that monitors the web in real time — and says it uses that information to predict the future. The company is called Recorded Future, and it scours tens of thousands of websites, blogs and Twitter accounts to find the relationships between people, organizations, actions and incidents — both present and still-to-come. In a white paper, the company says its temporal analytics engine "goes beyond search" by "looking at the 'invisible links' between documents that talk about the same, or related, entities and events." The idea is to figure out for each incident who was involved, where it happened and when it might go down.
Steve Watson Prisonplanet.com Thursday, Jul 29th, 2010 Google’s cosy relationship with the U.S. spy network has once again been thrust into the spotlight as the company is reported to have jointly invested with the CIA in an Internet monitoring project that scours Twitter accounts, blogs and websites for all sorts of information, and can also “predict the future”. Google Ventures, the investment arm of Google, has injected a sum of up to $10 million, as has In-Q-Tel – which handles investments for the CIA and the wider intelligence network – into a company called Recorded Future . The company describes its analytics as “the ultimate tool for open-source intelligence”.
But the presence of the police officers in the garage that Friday afternoon in July was anything but ordinary: They were directed to the parking structure by a computer program that had predicted that car burglaries were especially likely there that day. The program is part of an unusual experimen t by the Santa Cruz Police Department in predictive policing — deploying officers in places where crimes are likely to occur in the future. In July, Santa Cruz began testing the prediction method for property crimes like car and home burglaries and car thefts.
Recently in Santa Cruz, California, two women were arrested after they were caught peering into cars in a downtown parking garage. One of the women was carrying illegal drugs, while the other woman was found to have outstanding warrants. However, the police were already on the scene thanks to a new computer program that predicted that car burglaries were especially likely at that place and on that day. The program is part of an experiment being conducted by the Santa Cruz Police Department which sends officers to places that the program predicts crimes are likely to occur in the future. According to Zach Friend, the Santa Cruz Police Department’s crime analyst, the program has helped officers preempt several crimes and has led to five arrests since the department began the experiment in July. “We’re facing a situation where we have 30 percent more calls for service but 20 percent less staff than in the year 2000, and that is going to continue to be our reality,” Mr.
Maybe some of you have heard of The Web Bot Project , but for those of you who have not, it's quite intriguing. The web bot project, developed in the late 1990's, was created to assist in making stock market predictions. The technology uses a system of spiders to crawl the Internet and search for keywords, much like a search engine does.
Subscribe to Inside Report (Click Here) Join in discussions about economic matters by Clicking Here Web Bot Technology In June 2001 I began to correspond with a reader of my website who said he was willing to share access to a promising new web technology, on the condition that I protect his identity. The person related that he had been a very senior programmer with a software company in the Pacific Northwest (you can guess which company, right?) and besides being a SQL ace, he was also heavily into linguistics and a language called Prolog, which is more like an artificial intelligence language than anything else. I was skeptical, to be sure, but a few days after we began the email exchange of ideas, he sent me a program he had written that allows a computer to be turned into speed reading tool.
An internal U.S. Department of Homeland Security document indicates that a controversial program designed to predict whether a person will commit a crime is already being tested on some members of the public voluntarily, CNET has learned. If this sounds a bit like the Tom Cruise movie called " Minority Report ," or the CBS drama " Person of Interest ," it is. But where "Minority Report" author Philip K. Dick enlisted psychics to predict crimes, DHS is betting on algorithms: it's building a "prototype screening facility" that it hopes will use factors such as ethnicity, gender, breathing, and heart rate to "detect cues indicative of mal-intent." Excerpt from internal DHS document obtained by the Electronic Privacy Information Center
9 September 2011 Last updated at 10:57 ET Sentiment mining showed a sharp change in tone around Egypt ahead of President Mubarak's ousting Feeding a supercomputer with news stories could help predict major world events, according to US research. A study, based on millions of articles, charted deteriorating national sentiment ahead of the recent revolutions in Libya and Egypt. While the analysis was carried out retrospectively, scientists say the same processes could be used to anticipate upcoming conflict. The system also picked up early clues about Osama Bin Laden's location.
What if police could predict property crimes with the same accuracy the Weather Channel can predict whether or not a storm will pass? The Santa Cruz Police Department isn’t exactly the Precrime unit from the 2002 film Minority Report, but it uses models normally used for predicting aftershocks from earthquakes, to predict when and where crimes are likely to occur, The New York Times reports. Car and home burglaries and car thefts are all types of crimes that can be anticipated with the algorithm. Without the help of technology, crime fighting generally involves this: When there’s a crime, more cops flock to the scene. However, in this economy, police departments are stretched for labor. So the police in Santa Cruz are checking to see if math can help distribute crime fight resources more efficiently.