Notes from Ray’s Desk: Big Data, Tech Updates, and a Sneak Peek

This is the first blog in a new series we are launching called ‘Notes from Ray’s Desk’. This blog series is written by our Director of Technology Ray Stockford, and focuses Place2Give’s technology, updates to that technology, and general things of interest to our tech team.

How can Big Data serve Philanthropy?

‘Big Data’ is probably most widely known for its ability to analyse large and varied datasets to determine a statistically valid answer to a particular problem. So far, corporate entities have used this to track surfing habits to target a demographic with specific browser content or advertising. Or, retailers track buying habits to target customers with specific flyers or coupons (I.E: Target). How does Place2Give fit into this? The technology we are building will tap into this ability and allow the charitable sector to benefit from ‘Big Data’.

What’s going on with Place2Give’s technology?

New Website Portal - Provides advanced search capabilities (US/Canada) to match your donor profile to charities of interest. Many data sources provide a complete picture of each charity, from mission, vision and projects to financial reports. Charities can also update any missing information manually. Our credit card and PayPal portal allows for easy donation to any charity.  By partnering with third party providers in the US we can facilitate cross-border philanthropy.

The CRM Advisor Toolbox - Enables the investment sector to easily provide their clients with a philanthropy portfolio using a plug-in to their existing CRM (Customer Relationship Management) software. Currently SugarCRM is supported and development is ongoing to extend this to other CRMs.  See the video demo of the Toolbox at Finovate2013.

SNEAK PEAK at the GIVE-API – The GIVE-API (Application Programming Interface) will provide developers access to our search portal methods, the charity profile data and the  and payment gateways. Development is ongoing to provide additional features, like customized API access portals and automated setup for API clients.