Google has open sourced a tool for inferring cause from correlations

Google open sourced a new package for the R statistical computing software that’s designed to help users infer whether a particular action really did cause subsequent activity. Google has been using the tool, called CausalImpact, to measure AdWords campaigns but it has broader appeal.

Machine Learning, in Redmond and beyond

Microsoft’s been in the machine learning game for almost 15 years, announcing a revamped offering last month. What does Redmond’s Machine Learning history tell us about the market’s future?

New analytics capabilities go mainstream

In his Weekly Update, Andrew Brust, the Gigaom Research research director for data, looks at the dynamics as new predictive, streaming and in-memory analytics gain momentum in the market. He notes that these once-forward technologies are becoming mainstream and sees some promising startups bringing new capabilities to the space.


Machine learning startup Context Relevant raises $21M in series B funding

Context Relevant, a Seattle-based startup that promises to create accurate predictive models in a hurry, even across large datasets, has raised a $21 million series B round of venture capital. Formation 8 led the round, which also included existing investors Madrona Venture Group, Bloomberg Beta and Vulcan Capital, and several angels and strategic investors. Context Relevant’s technology includes specialized algorithms for functions such as fraud detection and behavioral analysis, then automatically analyzes data against them and generates models that can added to applications without recoding.

Predictive marketing startup 6Sense launches with $12M in funding

6Sense, a startup using machine learning to help companies predict who’ll buy their products, launched on Monday along with $12 million in venture capital from Battery Ventures and Venrock. The company claims it uses behavioral data to predict when customers are in the market to buy, and it focuses on each part of the sales cycle. Sales and marketing have become major use cases for machine learning, with a growing numbers of startups trying to help business know which customers to target, when and how.