Taking advantage of Twitter


After initially mapping 8 million flood-related tweets throughout the region over the past couple years as part of a Twitter Data Grant, the University of Wollongong and a local emergency agency have developed a project called PetaJakarta that builds a real-time map of areas affected by floods, based on geo-tagged tweets directed to the project using a specific hashtag. According to a Twitter blog post announcing the project, the goal is to help emergency workers and citizens in one of the world’ most-populous areas understand how floods are moving and what areas have been hit the hardest.

An education startup called Galvanize, which focuses on tech workers and entrepreneurs, has acquired a San Francisco company called Zipfian Academy that offers a 12-week program in data science. Zipfian’s instructors have data analysis and engineering backgrounds at a variety of companies ranging from software startups to Facebook. One of them, Adam Gibson, is the founder of a deep learning startup called Skymind. Galvanize currently has locations in San Francisco, Denver and Boulder, Colorado, and will offer the Zipfian program, as well as a new master’s degree in big data, at the San Francisco campus.

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