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UN honors George Boole

Better Data, Better Lives

Better Data, Better Lives

  • 08 Jun 2015

A resolution from the UN General Assembly has declared October 20 2015 to be World Statistic Day, honoring the legacy of George Boole and the importance of data analysis. The theme is 'Better Data, Better Lives' and the last World Statistic Day in 2010 was a great success, celebrated around the world.

United Nations General Assembly singles out George Boole

The United Nations recognised the extraordinary global impact of the work of George Boole at a plenary session of the General Assembly in New York this week, as University College Cork (UCC) celebrates his life and legacy with a year of national and international events, conferences and projects.

The General Assembly has designated 20th October, 2015 as World Statistics Day in a resolution introduced by Hungary and co-sponsored by Ireland. The resolution text noted that 2015 marks the bicentenary of the birth of Boole and recognised that his application of the principles of logic as a form of algebra underpins all modern computer science. Fittingly, the theme for World Statistics Day is ‘Better Data. Better Lives’, given that without Boole’s work, large scale data management work would be impossible.

Test your knowledge of George Boole

Speaking in New York, the Irish Ambassador to the United Nations, Mr David Donoghue, said “At the United Nations General Assembly, the singular importance of the work of Boole in enabling modern computing and the operation of electronic technology was worthy of special celebration this year. Boolean logic is a fundamental foundation of the science of Big Data which offers immense opportunities for enhancing the lives of humanity."

Welcoming the news at UCC, where George Boole was Professor of Mathematics from 1849 to 1864, President, Dr Michael Murphy, paid tribute to the work of the Ambassador and staff at the Irish Embassy in New York who championed the initiative: “Boole’s work remained known only to specialist pure mathematicians for almost eighty years after his death. Its significance was first recognised by Claude Shannon at MIT in 1938 and even he could not have imagined its ultimate global significance and impact at that time. Our objective this year is to ensure that as many people as possible across the globe become familiar with the story of George Boole, his life, his genius and his legacy”, said Dr Murphy.

To see the text of the resolution visit  George Boole is mentioned in paragraph 10

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