Big Data, Searches &

The OTR Book Club Daily

A few months ago, a friend introduced me to, which works “behind the scenes” to search the web to find content that is of interest to me.  I was curious.  Was this artificial intelligence (AI) at work and could I access this from my desktop or iPad?

According to, they “use natural language processing, machine learning and social signals to analyse and extract the most relevant and engaging stories from social media and the web.”

And so, I began a new research project. has become my way to collect interesting articles about books and art using an approach which involves new technologies that I know very little about. Over the centuries, ways to harness knowledge has been an evolving. Now we have the challenge of “Big Data” a term that describes a large volume of data, structured and instructed, that inundates our day-to-day lives.  What do we do with all that information!!?

Here is how it works: allows me to be the editor of a personal magazine, choosing subject matter that highlights my personal interests.

I recently set up a twitter link to highlight these articles.  For example, yesterday’s “The OTR Book Club Daily” highlighted a Goodreads post, “The accidental Library:  Why Elon Musk launched books to space that could last 14 billion years.”  Today, the biography of Phillis Wheatley came to life, compliments of Biography.  Yes, it is a daily paper that is produced without my assistance.

Whether I continue to add the twitter link depends upon whether the message is of interest to others.   In the meantime, I am enjoying my mini-research project.

My Editor’s note on

There is always a story to be read, an adventure to be imagined, and an idea to be understood. Words give meaning to the present while expressing the universal hopes and aspirations of humanity, past and future.  Gertrude Stein once said, “A masterpiece…may be unwelcome but it is never dull.”  For me, books that challenge my “status quo” and test my firmly held beliefs may be uncomfortable, but they are anything but boring.  The bond between writer and reader gives relevance to the exchange.  My goal is to understand the message in the spirit in which it was given and to embrace the diversity of accepted wisdom. In the end, it is about connecting with others, whether they live in our century or 2500 years ago.




Published by Rebecca Budd

Blogger, Visual Storyteller, Podcaster, Traveler and Life-long Learner

17 thoughts on “Big Data, Searches &

  1. Good you are enjoying the paper so far and it’s nice that it narrows down articles of interest to you from this huge web of online info we have at our disposal (which can sometimes be overwhelming!). Happy Friday 🙂

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    1. I agree, Christy – the amount of information that comes online can be overwhelming. We need to have sophisticated editing functions that allows us to find those articles/blogs/friends that feed out spirits.

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  2. As I said in our conversation yesterday—I was asked to join, however, I declined. I have a hard time understanding the things I do on line as it is. I am sure it is worthwhile. I wish you much success!

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    1. Thank you!!! This is an interesting research project for me. What do we do we all of that information? How can we add to the huge conversation in a way that is meaningful and life-affirming. In the midst of noise, I have found that a still, quiet and compassionate voice is heard above the din. I am delighted that I have found a wonderful virtual community that thrives on the exchange of knowledge and experience!!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I was wondering what it was, and just about to ask you about it, after seeing your daily art and literature posts on Twitter. Thanks for explaining, it sounds really interesting.

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    1. I am not certain whether I will continue to add to my twitter feed as I understand that readers are invited to open a magazine once they open the link. This can be very confusing. What I think I’ll do is add the URL link of anything that is interesting rather than set up directly to Twitter. I set up the magazine so that I would have information coming directly to me. Technology is taking us places that we have never been before. I am learning that too much info, is simply too much info. We need to give our brains a rest and take time to reflect, pause and consider. I so enjoy our conversations.

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      1. Yes, I noticed that it was some kind of magazine, but I clicked only on the articles you shared. But if it’s been confusing, than it’s probably better to share a direct link.
        There’s a world of information at our fingertips, and that’s fantastic for curious minds like you and I 😉 But, you’re right, our brains need time to process and rest too 😊 Take care!

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  4. Thanks so much for explaining this remarkable tool, Becky. There is so much of interest out there, it can seem overwhelming to access the bits that are of most interest and relevance to us. Anything which can help point us in the right direction is to be welcomed!! 🙂

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    1. We are entering a brave new world where information holds enormous power. The questions that remain: Will we have efficient access? Will all have the same access? How will we use this information for the good of society? We live in interesting times!!

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      1. Any new development like this is akin to the times when people could first read the printed word, or speak to each other on the telephone. Miraculous, and yet the same time a huge challenge to everything we know and feel comfortable with.

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