- Associated Press - Saturday, May 24, 2014

TROY, N.Y. (AP) - The chairman of IBM has told graduates of Rensselaer (rehn-suh-LEER’) Polytechnic Institute that they stand at the dawn of a data-driven era.

Ginni Rometty spoke at the Troy, New York-based institute’s commencement Saturday. She told members of the Class of 2014 they were facing “a new age being made possible by a new natural resource - data.”

According to a release from RPI, Rometty said data will be to the 21st century what steam was to the 18th century, electricity to the 19th and hydrocarbons to the 20th.

The 1,613 graduates also heard from geneticist Mary-Claire King and from British computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web.

The graduating students come from 44 states and 24 foreign nations.

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