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Predictive Analytics: the Power to Predict Who Will Click, Buy, Lie, or Die

Predictive Analytics: the Power to Predict Who Will Click, Buy, Lie, or Die

Book rating: 02 Hardback

By (author) Eric S. Siegel, Foreword by Thomas H. Davenport

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  • Publisher: John Wiley & Sons Inc
  • Format: Hardback | 320 pages
  • Dimensions: 163mm x 229mm x 30mm | 204g
  • Publication date: 8 March 2013
  • Publication City/Country: New York
  • ISBN 10: 1118356853
  • ISBN 13: 9781118356852
  • Sales rank: 56,423

Product description

"The Freakonomics of big data." -- Stein Kretsinger , founding executive of Advertising.com; former lead analyst at Capital One This book is easily understood by all readers. Rather than a "how to" for hands-on techies, the book entices lay-readers and experts alike by covering new case studies and the latest state-of-the-art techniques. You have been predicted -- by companies, governments, law enforcement, hospitals, and universities. Their computers say, "I knew you were going to do that!" These institutions are seizing upon the power to predict whether you're going to click, buy, lie, or die. Why? For good reason: predicting human behavior combats financial risk, fortifies healthcare, conquers spam, toughens crime fighting, and boosts sales. How? Prediction is powered by the world's most potent, booming unnatural resource: data. Accumulated in large part as the by-product of routine tasks, data is the unsalted, flavorless residue deposited en masse as organizations churn away. Surprise! This heap of refuse is a gold mine. Big data embodies an extraordinary wealth of experience from which to learn. Predictive analytics unleashes the power of data. With this technology , the computer literally learns from data how to predict the future behavior of individuals. Perfect prediction is not possible, but putting odds on the future -- lifting a bit of the fog off our hazy view of tomorrow -- means pay dirt. In this rich, entertaining primer, former Columbia University professor and Predictive Analytics World founder Eric Siegel reveals the power and perils of prediction: What type of mortgage risk Chase Bank predicted before the recession. Predicting which people will drop out of school, cancel a subscription, or get divorced before they are even aware of it themselves. Why early retirement decreases life expectancy and vegetarians miss fewer flights. Five reasons why organizations predict death, including one health insurance company. How U.S. Bank, European wireless carrier Telenor, and Obama's 2012 campaign calculated the way to most strongly influence each individual. How IBM's Watson computer used predictive modeling to answer questions and beat the human champs on TV's Jeopardy! How companies ascertain untold, private truths -- how Target figures out you're pregnant and Hewlett-Packard deduces you're about to quit your job. How judges and parole boards rely on crime-predicting computers to decide who stays in prison and who goes free. What's predicted by the BBC, Citibank, ConEd, Facebook, Ford, Google, IBM, the IRS, Match.com, MTV, Netflix, Pandora, PayPal, Pfizer, and Wikipedia. A truly omnipresent science, predictive analytics affects everyone, every day. Although largely unseen, it drives millions of decisions, determining whom to call, mail, investigate, incarcerate, set up on a date, or medicate. Predictive analytics transcends human perception. This book's final chapter answers the riddle: What often happens to you that cannot be witnessed, and that you can't even be sure has happened afterward -- but that can be predicted in advance? Whether you are a consumer of it -- or consumed by it -- get a handle on the power of Predictive Analytics .

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Author information

ERIC SIEGEL, PhD, founder of Predictive Analytics World and Executive Editor of the Predictive Analytics Times , makes the how and why of predictive analytics understandable and captivating. Eric is a former Columbia University professor--who used to sing educational songs to his students--and a renowned speaker, educator, and leader in the field.

Customer reviews

By Aris 12 Dec 2013 2

This book seemed to me like a narration of the field's history (a fancy one though, I can imagine the author making the Hollywood kind of voice). Or maybe like a very long advert (why would anyone want to create or consume an advert of a scientific field is a good question; if you have bought the book, you are already interested). You cannot take any higher level than that and in fact it is so high-level that the concepts go completely missing. I quickly found myself learning nothing more than history and despite, I carried on reading (maybe I went on to 70% of the book before quitting it) so as to be sure I am not missing something. Knowing the domain now more than when I purchased the book, I can safely say that if you are looking to gain an insight on the relevant concepts and ideas, you need to look elsewhere. Same goes even if you are looking for a pop-sci, high-level "Freakonomics" kind of reading. This book is nothing like it (as it is advertised).

By Jesús Nieto 23 May 2013 2

Interesting reading but nothing else.

Review quote

Praise for Predictive Analytics "What Nate Silver did for poker and politics, this does for everything else. A broad, well-written book easily accessible to non-nerd readers." --DAVID LEINWEBER , author of Nerds on Wall Street: Math, Machines and Wired Markets "This book is an operating manual for twenty-first-century life. Drawing predictions from big data is at the heart of nearly everything, whether it's in science, business, finance, sports, or politics. And Eric Siegel is the ideal guide." --STEPHEN BAKER , author of The Numerati and Final Jeopardy: Man vs. Machine and the Quest to Know Everything "Simultaneously entertaining, informative, and nuanced. Siegel goes behind the hype and makes the science exciting." --RAYID GHANI , Chief Data Scientist, Obama for America 2012 Campaign "This is Moneyball for business, government, and healthcare." --JIM STERNE , founder, eMetrics Summit; chairman, Digital Analytics Association " Predictive Analytics is not only a deeply informative dive into a topic that is critical to virtually every sector of business today, it is also a delight to read." --GEOFFREY MOORE , author of Crossing the Chasm "The future is right now--you're living in it. Read this book to gain understanding of where we are and where we're headed." --ROGER CRAIG , record-breaking analytical Jeopardy! champion; CEO, Cotinga

Back cover copy

Praise for "Predictive Analytics""What Nate Silver did for poker and politics, this does for everything else. A broad, well-written book easily accessible to non-nerd readers."--DAVID LEINWEBER, author of "Nerds on Wall Street: Math, Machines and Wired Markets""This book is an operating manual for twenty-first-century life. Drawing predictions from big data is at the heart of nearly everything, whether it's in science, business, finance, sports, or politics. And Eric Siegel is the ideal guide."--STEPHEN BAKER, author of "The Numerati "and" Final Jeopardy: Man vs. Machine and the Quest to Know Everything""Simultaneously entertaining, informative, and nuanced. Siegel goes behind the hype and makes the science exciting."--RAYID GHANI, Chief Data Scientist, Obama for America 2012 Campaign"This is "Moneyball" for business, government, and healthcare."--JIM STERNE, founder, eMetrics Summit; chairman, Digital Analytics Association""Predictive Analytics" is not only a deeply informative dive into a topic that is critical to virtually every sector of business today, it is also a delight to read."--GEOFFREY MOORE, author of "Crossing the Chasm""The future is right now--you're living in it. Read this book to gain understanding of where we are and where we're headed."--ROGER CRAIG, record-breaking analytical "Jeopardy! "champion; CEO, Cotinga

Flap copy

You have been predicted--by companies, governments, law enforcement, hospitals, and universities. Their computers say, "I knew you were going to do that!" These institutions are seizing upon the power to predict whether you're going to click, buy, lie, or die.Why? For good reason: predicting human behavior combats financial risk, fortifies healthcare, conquers spam, toughens crime fighting, and boosts sales.How? Prediction is powered by the world's most potent, booming "unnatural" resource: data. Accumulated in large part as the by-product of routine tasks, data is the unsalted, flavorless residue deposited en masse as organizations churn away. Surprise! This heap of refuse is a gold mine. "Big data "embodies an extraordinary wealth of experience from which to learn.Predictive analytics unleashes the power of data. With this technology, the computer literally learns from data how to predict the future behavior of individuals. Perfect prediction is not possible, but putting odds on the future--lifting a bit of the fog off our hazy view of tomorrow--means pay dirt.In this rich, entertaining primer, former Columbia University professor and Predictive Analytics World founder Eric Siegel reveals the power and perils of prediction: What type of mortgage behavior Chase Bank predictedPredicting which people will drop out of school, cancel a subscription, or get divorced before they are even aware of it themselvesWhy early retirement decreases life expectancy and vegetarians miss fewer flightsFive reasons why organizations predict deathHow U.S. Bank and Obama's 2012 campaign calculated the way to most strongly influence each individualHow IBM's Watson computer beat the human champs on TV's Jeopardy!How Target figures out you're pregnant and Hewlett-Packard deduces you're about to quit your jobHow judges and parole boards rely on crime-predicting computers to decide who stays in prison and who goes freeWhat's predicted by Citibank, Facebook, Ford, Google, IBM, the IRS, Match.com, Pfizer, and WikipediaA truly omnipresent science, predictive analytics affects everyone, every day. Although largely unseen, it drives millions of decisions, determining whom to call, mail, investigate, incarcerate, set up on a date, or medicate. Whether you are a consumer of it--or consumed by it--get a handle on the power of "Predictive Analytics."

Table of contents

Foreword Thomas H. Davenport xiii Preface xv What is the occupational hazard of predictive analytics? Introduction: The Prediction Effect 1 Chapter 1: Liftoff! Prediction Takes Action (deployment) 17 Chapter 2: With Power Comes Responsibility: Hewlett-Packard, Target, and the Police Deduce Your Secrets (ethics) 37 Chapter 3: The Data Effect: A Glut at the End of the Rainbow (data) 67 Chapter 4: The Machine That Learns: A Look Inside Chase's Prediction of Mortgage Risk (modeling) 103 Chapter 5: The Ensemble Effect: Netflix, Crowdsourcing, and Supercharging Prediction (ensembles) 133 Chapter 6: Watson and the Jeopardy! Challenge (question answering) 151 Chapter 7: Persuasion by the Numbers: How Telenor, U.S. Bank, and the Obama Campaign Engineered Influence (uplift) 187 Afterword 218 Ten Predictions for the First Hour of 2020 Appendices A. Five Effects of Prediction 221 B. Twenty-One Applications of Predictive Analytics 222 C. Prediction People--Cast of "Characters" 225 Notes 228 Acknowledgments 290 About the Author 292 Index 293