The little black boxes in airplanes provide useful information after a crash has taken place. Now researchers have a way to use black box info from planes that do not crash -- to help prevent accidents from ever happening. Some airlines already use a program that checks 88 flight parameters in the black box. But a Boeing 787 can record 2,000 flight parameters. So the researchers employed what’s called cluster analysis. They took data from 365 flights of Boeing 777s in a month of operations of a now-defunct European airline. They filtered the data into clusters, groupings of flights with similar patterns. Any data points outside of normal operations appeared as an anomaly.