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Top Stories: October 31-November 4, 2011

An author turns to automation, a look at privacy in the age of big data, and a simple rule for data ethics.

Here’s a look at the top stories published across O’Reilly sites this week.

How I automated my writing career
You scale content businesses by increasing the number of people who create the content … or so conventional wisdom says. Learn how a former author is using software to simulate and expand human-quality writing.

What does privacy mean in an age of big data?
Ironclad digital privacy isn’t realistic, argues “Privacy and Big Data” co-author Terence Craig. What we need instead are laws and commitments founded on transparency.

If your data practices were made public, would you be nervous?
Solon Barocas, a doctoral student at New York University, discusses consumer perceptions of data mining and how companies and data scientists can shape data mining’s reputation.

Five ways to improve publishing conferences
Keynotes and panel discussions may not be the best way to program conferences. What if organizers instead structured events more like a great curriculum?

Anthropology extracts the true nature of tech
Genevieve Bell, director of interaction and experience research at Intel, talks about how anthropology can inform business decisions and product design.


Tools of Change for Publishing, being held February 13-15 in New York, is where the publishing and tech industries converge. Register to attend TOC 2012.

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