Big Data for Big Appetites: Quantifying Thanksgiving
Data analytics has become widespread and commonplace in a variety of applications, and Thanksgiving is no exception. Typically renowned for the big F’s (food, family, friends, and football), let’s take a look at how big data is keeping us in a thankful and giving spirit this holiday season.
Out and About
- Google used search history from Google Maps to show traffic patterns in 25 U.S. markets over the holiday weekend, with in-depth looks at food, shopping, and much more.
- States that require retailers to close on Thanksgiving see a dropoff in retail foot traffic of 85%, according to FourSquare phone data.
What’s the Beef?
- The negative effects of political divisiveness are spreading to the dining room. According to data from 10 million cell phones, “politically divided” families are cutting their Thanksgiving dinners short by 20-30 minutes.
- The average price of a Thanksgiving meal is estimated to cost $49.12 in 2017, a decrease of 1.5%, or 75 cents, from last year.
Whether to Believe the Weather
- Will there be a white Thanksgiving? A climate researcher at University of Alaska Fairbanks analyzed thousands of weather stations over the last 150 years to determine whether it will snow in your city on Turkey Day.
- Have you been carefully watching weather patterns to determine Thanksgiving travel plans? Well, according to Popular Science, any observed trends should be heavily discounted.
148 Years of Gravy and Gridiron
- While the NFL has been a staple of Thanksgiving Day since 1920, the first Thanksgiving Day football game was actually a matchup between two football clubs, the Young America Cricket Club and the Germantown Cricket Club, played in November 1969 in Philadelphia.
- While the Thanksgiving Day games are steeped in tradition, fans may see something less conventional this year in terms of advertising. Instead of the guaranteed commercial break that lets you run back to the fridge for leftovers, fans will now see 6-second messages that take over the majority of the screen during the game broadcast. Better run quick!