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A Look Inside the Wolfram Data Summit 2010

September 9, 2010 —
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The Wolfram Data Summit 2010 opened this morning in Washington, DC. The inaugural event brings together key people responsible for the world’s great data repositories to exchange ideas, learn from each others’ experiences, and develop innovative data management strategies for the future.

The invitation-only conference includes participants from organizations such as the U.S. Census Bureau, NASA, NPR, the United Nations, OpenStreetMap, Thomson Reuters, comScore, and many others.

The summit officially opened this morning with a keynote address from Stephen Wolfram, Wolfram Research CEO and creator of Wolfram|Alpha. Topics being presented and discussed at the summit include data curation methods, automated data collection, data linguistics, crowdsourcing, the democratization of data, and more.

Stephen Wolfram delivers the keynote address at the Wolfram Data Summit 2010

Stephen Wolfram delivers the keynote address at the Wolfram Data Summit 2010

Participants at the Wolfram Data Summit 2010 discuss concepts for the future

Participants view a history of systematic data and the development of computable knowledge

Presentations at the Wolfram Data Summit 2010

The Wolfram Data Summit 2010 will continue through Friday, September 10. We invite you to follow the Twitter hashtag #WolframSummit to participate in the conversation and to get interesting insights and commentary from Wolfram Data Summit participants.


A valuable demonstration of the size of the Wolfram Alpha project. I find it hard to convince people that this project cannot be ignored. People so easily say ” Oh! I can do all that with my existing facilities and are not willing to examine it closely. This will help.

I suggest Wolfram publish its Curation Manual setting out the way its data is to be curated. The manual would need to be online as it would be subject to frequent updates. Wolfram staff would regards it as their authority on curation and where practical it’s rules would be built into Wolfram Alpha.
Brian Gilbert, Volunteer Curator.

Posted by Brian Gilbert September 10, 2010 at 5:34 am

    Of the many bafflements of the current state Wolfram|Alpha, the complete absence of self-reflection is the most baffling. Why shouldn’t a “Curation Manual” query return a pointer to the current draft of Wolfram’s Curation Manual, however drafty or skeletal.

    W|A refuses even to share its understanding of ideas at its core. Try “Computable data” or “Computable knowledge.”

    Posted by Fred Klingener September 17, 2010 at 7:11 am

Agree that open availability of details about how quality is maintained and ensured is vital.

I’ve looked at several public data sources in recent years. My conclusions always include “any engineer who used this in a design deserves exactly what he gets”!

I’m not sure what democratization means, but truth is much more important than popularity when dealing with facts.

Posted by Mike Gale September 14, 2010 at 6:24 pm