Chris Horn: Predictions using big data a hot theme for the tech sector

Francis Beaufort from Navan invented the scale of wind strength now named after him in 1805. He had been shipwrecked at the age of 15, and devoted his career to the development of maritime charts. In 1831 a naval captain, Robert Fitzroy, sought Beaufort’s suggestions on which scientist to bring with him on a charting expedition to South America. Beaufort introduced the young captain of HMS Beagle to Charles Darwin, who subsequently wrote On The Origin of Species based on his research during the voyage. Fitzroy was a keen observer of the weather. He invented a barometer and wrote a widely used maritime manual on weather indicators. In 1854 Fitzroy was appointed as chief of a new government department to collect and analyse weather data at sea. In due course…


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