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I just read about this fascinating tool, the nextexpertizer, which gathers data about the way people describe things, and then analyzes these descriptions to predict social change. You can read the full article in Google’s new online magazine, “Think Quarterly”.  Soft Values, Hard Facts

Now, this article completely enthralled me, for several reasons. First, it is based on data. It uses data to predict how and when people will begin to believe and adopt new ideas. This data can identify minute patterns, and order them into a process which can predict people’s behavior.

You may know that I love applied data, so this is incredibly cool.

The second idea that I loved is that it mentions that being able to detect and identify patterns is a key strategy for leadership into the future. I think this is really true. While I’m not an economist or anything, my understanding is that our current economic conditions, including job losses, bank failures- everything- was predicted by those who study the data and noted the patterns.

It speaks, clearly, to the idea that those who don’t study history are doomed to repeat it.

(The third idea that I loved is that Google is actually putting out a pretty cool and thought-provoking online magazine.)

Now,data patterning and ordering may seem like a bit of an odd focus for a blog on social media, but here’s why it’s not. Social media is a vehicle for producing change.

We are able to interact with more people, more often, and more quickly than ever before. This has huge implications for the rate of spread of ideas and beliefs, and for creating mass influence. So, as you can see, noting and identifying patterns is directly relevant to social media.

The truth is, people are predictable. To be an effective entrepreneur, you must be able to find and identify patterns and utilize them in your marketing. Watch your social media interaction and engagement. You’ll find patterns of what content gets the most responses and comments. This is the start of your own personal nextexpertizer tool.

On a separate, but related note, I watched this interesting documentary last week- Life in Perpetual Beta– and the best question I took from it was this: “Is lowering the barriers to creativity making creativity happen faster? Or was it always happening at the same rate, but we just didn’t know about it as instantaneously as we do now?”

What do you think?

The biggest question is how technology is shaping communication, and how communication can be understood by technology. Data is really the way of the future, and the leaders will be those who can note and respond to data patterns before everyone else.