Chris J Powell

Social Media Monday – The World of WolframAlpha

It really is not just good enough to post a comment or participate in a Social Discussion.  To leverage the insights and information that comprehensive analytics can provide you have several options most of them will cost you an arm and a leg as they are designed to enhance and monitor a “Brand’s Social Profile”.  For those who know me…I am cheap…full on reuse coffee filter cheap and only spend money when there is no other alternative.

To start off with, WolframAlpha is not a Google Killer, it does things very differently but what it does I really like and it will very quickly become my new best friend.  There are several examples of what WolframAlpha can do but the first thing that I ran through was my Facebook Report.

The information that it was able to gather about me, in just a few minutes is Shocking, Amazing and it really tells a lot about how I use Facebook and for that matter who my friends are.

The most commented on Image and Post on Facebook returns us to last year when our puppy Chelsea when missing shortly after we picked her up from the Breeder’s and the most like post was one of my lovely daughter Emma at her Grade 8 Graduation earlier this year:


Now sure this is a good to know and it is not the be all and end all of Social Analytics but it is a start and finding WolframAlpha will become a new huge time suck for me, just as the random Google Searches that I used to do back in 1997-98 when it hit the ground running and had me move away from Yahoo, MSN and AltaVista.

What are some of the other things that can be done with WolframAlpha beyond being the ultimate Facebook Creeper?

Well there is the really neat look at the Real Time cost of a Flight from London, UK airport to multiple locations around the globe that range from $41 to Ireland to $1844 to Kuwait.

When we ask WolframAlpha “Who wrote Stairway to Heaven?” we get a very interesting series of information that would actually be useful beyond knowing that Jimmy Page and Robert Plant were the men behind those lyrics.

What may be my favorite Random Fact though would be how WolframAlpha connected the dots between the Survivors of the Titanic to come up with a very interesting series of connections.

Public uses of Big Data especially when it is connected to the wants and needs of real people I was quite impressed with this quick find and while it is cool that it has hundreds of presets…you can actually upload your own Data and move away from just text searches to analyzing your own data and making correlations for a very reasonable $4.99 per month (only $2.99 for students).

While not purely a Social Analytics Platform, with the Pro version, there is a wealth of information that could be gathered by connecting the APIs of the Social Networks together…hmmm I wonder could this be an interesting future project?  One that I could leverage for my own personal gain?  Stay tuned…the gears are turning!



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