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It’s "the Year of Big Data." What is it? What are the benefits and the dangers? Why are numerous federal agencies about to begin a major research initiative on big data? Also, can the international community heal a fractured Syrian opposition? On Reporter's Notebook, did Trayvon Martin or George Zimmerman call for help? As public reaction continues, we hear about voice analysis of a cry for help. 

Banner image by Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty Images

Frances Anderton
Christian Bordal
Gideon Brower

Making News Can International Community Heal Fractured Syrian Opposition? 7 MIN, 35 SEC

Former Secretary General Kofi Annan formally told the UN Security Council today that Syria has agreed to implement a peace plan on April 10, but fighting continues. Over the weekend, the US and others offered help to a fractured opposition. Josh Rogin reports for Foreign Policy magazine.

Josh Rogin, Bloomberg View (@joshrogin)

Main Topic Will Big Data and Big Money Mean Big Trouble? 37 MIN, 12 SEC

Big Data -- the accumulation of massive amounts of information just for its own sake -- is the revenge of the nerds, a booming generator of money and power. New kinds of faster, cheaper hardware and software are providing a level of data never imagined before, including facts about human behavior. If that means more efficient sales of products to people want them, does it also mean identify theft and credit card fraud? If consumers are worried, why do they pour their personal data into Facebook and Twitter?  What are the broader applications of Big Data?

Gilad Elbaz, Factual (@gilelbaz)
Steve Lohr, New York Times (@stevelohr )
Marc Rotenberg, Electronic Privacy Information Center
Eric Siegel, Predictive Analytics World (@predictanalytic)

Privacy, Information, and Technology (Aspen Elective)

Marc Rotenberg, Daniel J. Solove, Paul M. Schwartz

Guest Interview Is That George Zimmerman or Trayvon Martin Screaming for Help? 6 MIN, 13 SEC

Every development in the Trayvon Martin case continues to generate widespread reaction, both heated and polarized. George Zimmerman claims he shot Martin in self-defense, and Sanford, Florida’s investigating officers gave Zimmerman the benefit of the doubt.  One key piece of evidence is a scream for help recorded during a 911 call.  Was that Zimmerman or Martin who cried out before the shot was fired? The Orlando Sentinel submitted the recording to a forensic voice consultant. Jeff Weiner reports for the Sentinel.

Jeff Weiner, Orlando Sentinel (@jeffweineros)


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