The KDD Cup is the world’s foremost data mining competition. It’s an annual contest that challenges data scientists to find out what they can learn from a given dataset. Previous competitions have used data in areas ranging from particle physics to customer relations. This year, they’re looking for something particularly meaningful: a data problem in an area such as medicine, education, the environment, or anything that leads to a social good.
The deadline is approaching, and they’re still looking for good candidates The competition will be hosted by Kaggle, so if your submission wins, you don’t have to worry about logistics; all you need to do is supply the data, and one or two well-defined problems that you expect the data to solve. Then sit back and wait for the solutions to roll in.
The KDD Cup website includes directions for submitting a problem. You don’t need to provide the dataset at this time, but to apply you need to provide a fairly rigorous description of the data and the problem you want to solve.
Given that the deadline for submissions is November 15, 2011 (that’s next Tuesday), if you think have a good idea and some tough data, you can contact them and ask whether your idea is appropriate, and then possibly ask for an extension. If you’ve got a tough, practical, real-world data problem that you need to solve, this is your chance!