Alina Selyukh

Alina Selyukh is a business reporter at NPR, where she follows the path of the retail and tech industries, tracking how America's biggest companies are influencing the way we spend our time, money, and energy.

Before joining NPR in October 2015, Selyukh spent five years at Reuters, where she covered tech, telecom and cybersecurity policy, campaign finance during the 2012 election cycle, health care policy and the Food and Drug Administration, and a bit of financial markets and IPOs.

Selyukh began her career in journalism at age 13, freelancing for a local television station and several newspapers in her home town of Samara in Russia. She has since reported for CNN in Moscow, ABC News in Nebraska, and NationalJournal.com in Washington, D.C. At her alma mater, Selyukh also helped in the production of a documentary for NET Television, Nebraska's PBS station.

She received a bachelor's degree in broadcasting, news-editorial and political science from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

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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.