Researchers remain optimistic about the prospect of keeping track of the exaflood of data, from gene sequences and distant pulsar signals to YouTube videos and email. During the recent annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, one session gave scientists and other academics an opportunity to learn more about some current strategies for storing data and using it productively. University of California at San Diego professor Larry Smarr demonstrated how genetic sequences from ocean bacteria can be coupled with environmental information about the organisms. Smarr said researchers were able to target specific gene sequences, annotated with helpful information. Meanwhile, Google researcher Hal Varian said the company’s Google Insights for Search analytical tools used information on individual searches for Toyota automobiles to accurately predict its sales volume.
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