Public data in Google search results

Google search now returns links to Google-generated data visualizations.

Currently, there are only two datasets available through this mechanism, “unemployment rate” and “population“. It’s unclear when we’ll see additional datasets offered through this channel.

The Google capability may be useful for quick viewing, but (so far) this is a toy:

* there’s no way to download the visualization, or the raw data;
* links are provided to data source information pages (US Bureau of Labor Statistics and Census Dept), but not to the data displayed on the chart;
* no analytic capabilities.

Google’s decision to announce on the same day as the Alpha debut was a childish prank. I suspect that Nova Spivack has it right and Erick Schonfeld is off the mark – but Erick is correct that Wolfram’s service is not live yet and we can’t know for certain what has been achieved until we see it for real.


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