Alina Selyukh

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MARY LOUISE KELLY, HOST:

"Big data" is a very 21st-century kind of buzzword, which ambiguously invokes the idea of using large sets of data to draw computer-assisted conclusions about trends, patterns and correlations, often about people and their behavior.

But if you wanted to trace the origin of using big data for health research, you'd have to go back — way back, to 17th-century England.

For the first time in history, federal researchers report that a majority of U.S. homes rely on cellphones alone for a telephone connection, without a landline.

The number of cellphone-only households predictably has been climbing over the years, surpassing the households with both a landline and a mobile phone and now reaching almost 51 percent. And it's tracked by — of all agencies — the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.