Last year we looked at the four companies and compared their business model over two quarters: Apple (hardware), Amazon (retail), Google (advertising), Microsoft (software). It struck me how far the integrated Wolfram Alpha technology has come in the last two years. It combines the symbolic computing capabilities of the Mathematica platform with curated data (for example financial data) and some pretty impressive linguistic analysis capabilities for free-form text input.
For example, in Wolfram Alpha, just type in the following query: “Googe vs. Amazon vs. Apple vs. Microsoft” The results are shown as a series of three screen-shots below:
Not only do you get the various data such as the fundamentals or the analysis of a mean-variance optimal portfolio displayed, but you get all the code needed to programmatically load such data. For example, if you want to get the breakdown of the analyst ratings, the system will expand it as follows:
So far we haven’t done any coding or bothered with integrating any data source. This amount of integration and automation is pretty impressive. I am often surprised how few companies are taking advantage of such advanced technology platforms.