From this Bank of England paper on using search data:
“In contrast to most traditional survey methods, they are collected as a by-product of normal activity, rather than requiring individuals or firms to respond to survey questions after the event. This can avoid problems associated with non-response or inaccurate responses. And it also means
that information is continually collected on a wider range of issues, rather than just on a few pre-determined questions. As a result, search data can help analyse issues that arise unexpectedly.”
“As a by-product of normal activity”… that’s how RedMonk Analytics works, understanding developer trends and preferences by aggregating implicit and explicit data from the networks they use. Its cool to see the Bank of England looking at similar approaches. Validates our model, and definitely makes sense for them.