The ease of data access has led to a paradigm shift in the way businesses operate. In the present state, apart from the traditional data, companies are increasingly using'alt-data' -- alternate data that can be accessed from unconventional sources like the web, customer support transcripts, sensors, satellite images and more. We all want to know something others don't know. People have long sought "local knowledge," "the inside scoop" or "a heads up" – the restaurant not in the guidebook, the real version of the story, or some advanced warning. What they really want is an advantage over common knowledge – and the unique information source that delivers it.
Online B2C businesses are exciting for quick adoption and scalability. There are different segments in online businesses like e-commerce, travel booking portals, content publication websites, classifieds portals and digital media websites. These businesses largely depend on the right visitors and quick customer acquisition. The core asset to leverage for such online companies is either competitive pricing for more conversions or quality content for driving genuine visitors to the website and earn through ad revenue. For news publishing and content driven websites, the content itself is a medium to communicate the value proposition to its audience.
As of January 2021, 4.7 billion people around the world have been recorded to use the internet, creating 1.7MB of data every second. Crawling this exponentially growing volume of data could provide many opportunities for breakthroughs in data science. Data scientists can leverage crawled data to perform many tasks like real-time analytics, training predictive machine learning models, and improving natural language processing capabilities. Web crawling software, such as Bright Data's data collector, extracts real-time public data from online platforms and deliver it to businesses on autopilot in different formats. This software is especially useful when collecting data from websites that protect themselves against scraping.
There is a wealth of information on the Web about any number of topics. Many communities in developing regions are often interested in information relating to specific topics. For example, health workers are interested in specific medical information regarding epidemic diseases in their region while teachers and students are interested in educational information relating to their curriculum. This paper presents the design of Contextual Information Portals, searchable information portals that contain a vertical slice of the Web about arbitrary topics tailored to a specific context. Contextual portals are particularly useful for communities that lack Internet or Web access or in regions with very poor network connectivity. This paper outlines the design space for constructing contextual information portals and describes the key technical challenges involved. We have implemented a proof-of-concept of our ideas, and performed an initial evaluation on a variety of topics relating to epidemiology, agriculture, and education.