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BrainSpace: building a social brain

23 Nov, 12 | by BMJ

BrainSpace, a potential solution to outdated search technology, was demonstrated at this year’s SpotOn London. Launched by PureDiscovery, a big data startup, its goal is to let users find information that matters without having to actually look for it. Instead, the technology is designed to bring data directly to the user.

 BrainSpace is already well-established in the world of archived content; it powers semantic search across more than 350 million documents for LexisNexis. PureDiscovery, however, has set its sights much higher. By not only determining relationships between documents, but also between between people, and people and documents, it is gearing up to create a ‘social brain’ which will revolutionise search.

Every document has a degree of social attention, which can be ascertained by tracking who is accessing it, how they’re sharing it and with whom. For publishers, that might mean analysing who is tweeting a particular article. Once BrainSpace knows who is interested in what, it is able to learn a lot about the nature of that document.

The social brain will start by aggregating tweets containing links from the top 10,000 or so Twitter accounts, and will then expand to more tweets and other sources. The connections BrainSpace makes between these pieces of content will form the brain.

It is in the process of building a reader application that will let users highlight a particular passage within a text, and then will point them to other content on that topic, or towards other users who write extensively on that topic, in order toencourage conversations and collaboration. You tell it what interests you and it points you towards further information.

Not only will companies be able to access this information, they’ll also be able to build their own brainspaces that connect their internal brains (data and people) with the greater social brain.

Scientists, researchers and knowledge workers all want to be relevantly connected to critical information. As more content is published every day, those critical connections become increasingly difficult to make. While search engine efficacy plummets, users are left unable to manage the abundance.

PureDiscovery’s BrainSpace is reinventing the art of information discovery for Publishers and their subscribers. The unique platform enables Publishers to transform their content sources into dynamic machine intelligences—Brains—that semantically connect users to relevant information, wherever it resides.

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