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Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Good News and Bad News

Thompson Reuters Open Calais is an online service that reads text and extracts information from it. It picks up things like names, numbers and dates, and probably does some more complex analysis as well. The good news is that it is free.
    When you feed it some text, it returns an RDF file which contains all of the extracted information in some special RDF format. I imagine this RDF file is good for something, but I haven't figured that part out yet. It is part of the Resource Description Framework.
    They also offer a paid subscription service for lawyers and stock brokers. This is where it gets interesting.

Open Calais Features 
I cut off the financial features checklist so the chart would fit on this page. 
We didn't lose any information: all the features are checked green for the premium package.
The financial package gets you green check marks on all of the features. Most of the features are self explanatory, but there were a couple of bits of jargon in there I didn't recognize.

Okay, so Open Calais picks information out of your story and generates all the metadata codes in the world, but look at the next couple of items:

  • Pharmaceutical Drugs
  • Financial Deals
Think news of FDA approval of a new drug might be of interest to Wall Street types? Well, yeah, but I didn't think it would so important that it would rate it's own line in the features list.

All of which make me think that the recent extraordinary price hikes on some drugs (Epi-pen springs to mind) might be related to the way Obama-care is being administered. In other words, I think someone is gaming the system.

Via Detroit Steve

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