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Oct 2017 | Data & the Public Sector

OPEN SOURCE, OPEN DATA AND OPEN GOVERNMENT
TARA HOLLAND, SAS CANADA

Data journalist Nate Silver is perhaps best known by the general public for his success at predicting U.S. election results based on statistical data. But his background is in sabermetrics—the statistical analysis of Major League Baseball. Baseball provides a fertile field for such analytics. The box score, invented in the late 1800s, records every statistical point of every single at bat, and is a format ripe for digitizing. Silver leveraged this vast pool of information to create PECOTA, an empirical system for forecasting the performance of pro baseball players. Silver sold PECOTA to Baseball Prospectus, which now markets the product for fantasy baseball leagues, and his 538 blog is licensed by the New York Times.

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