MOST INNOVATIVE COMPANIES 2014
For harnessing data from its planes and trains to power a new Industrial Internet, potentially saving billions. General Electric is best known for its machine making, but it’s gotten smart and branded itself as a big-data company, too, by pushing its vision for an “Industrial Internet”—the notion that machines should be connected like the web in order to increase efficiency and reduce downtime. In 2012, it launched software to help airlines and railroads move their data to the cloud and partnered with Accenture to form Taleris, a startup that will help airlines predict mechanical malfunctions and reduce flight cancellations. The Abu Dhabi–based Etihad Airways was the first to deploy the tech in November. Read more >>
For feeding its DIY data scientists cash-prize challenges (then molding them into a consulting biz). Now more than ever, organizations are turning toward data insights to make big decisions, and with its battalion of 150,000 data scientists, no one is better poised to take advantage of the shift than Kaggle. It farms out complex “data challenges” that come with cash prizes—early customers included Cornell University and the Heritage Provider Network—but now, even those from tech’s upper echelon ask for Kaggle’s help. (Kaggle’s scientists have created algorithms for both Amazon and Facebook.) CEO Anthony Goldbloom has cleverly transformed his group of scientists into a lucrative consulting service, in which they receive up to $300 an hour to untangle data problems.