Economy

Digging for gold in big data

Digging for gold in your company’s data

You’ve probably heard about ‘Big Data’ and ‘Predictive Analytics.’ These are the big buzz words floating around today. These terms sound very technical, futuristic even… and expensive. Perhaps you were informed that you need to start a project that incorporates these concepts, but you have no idea why or how you would embark on such a mission. Let me give you an example of why you should do just that. Most likely your company has customers. Hopefully the information about…

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Top 5 Reasons Why School District IT Strategy Plans Fail

So you think you have a good IT plan. You’re in year two of a five year plan but budget cuts hamper your ability to complete the rest of the plan. Declining enrollment is expected for the next few years so budgets will shrink which means fewer resources to execute your plan. You throw your hands in the air and wonder why you spent so much time planning when you have very little ability to influence the outcome. In a…

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Uber has some Über problems

Uber, the controversial startup taxi company has been shaking up the taxi business in cities around the world and growing rapidly. Uber has now raised even more money to fund this massive expansion with this financing round valuing the company at $40 billion (http://g3t.ca/UCQ68e) Uber has grown to 250 cities from 60 cities a year ago and operates 50 countries worldwide up from 21. This growth wouldn’t be possible without the customers to fuel it. It seems that the customers…

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What do real estate and dating have in common?

As mentioned in the previous post, last week I attended the Data Leadership Summit – http://www.datasummit.ca in Vancouver. It brought together a diverse audience to see speakers from different industries with different perspectives and experiences. In my opinion, there were two presentations which were particularly compelling. One was from real estate brokerage Redfin, the other from the online dating service Plentyoffish. I found it interesting that both shared many common themes. For instance, the level of exaggeration when one describing…

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The Big Question About Big Data

Predicting the future isn’t quite a mug’s game anymore. It was once the province of futurists who talked like evangelists and fortune-tellers who paradoxically could never seem to leverage their predictive abilities with a lottery ticket at their local convenience store. Today, lots of folks are into the prediction racket these days – “predictive analysis”, anyway, with an eerie degree of accuracy. It’s all thanks to Big Data – that ambiguous little term every vendor is using to sell their…

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The search – can we find the truth?

Mathias Dopfner, the CEO of Axel Springer, raised the issue about the uneasy relationship between Google and publishing companies. Axel Springer, a German media powerhouse, publishes over 200 newspapers and magazines; and derives 62% of their profits from their digital business. As you can imagine, Axel Springer depends heavily on the traffic supplied by search engines, most notably Google. Mathias (quite rightly) points out that the search results and ads serving algorithms are not transparent; and anyone with a business…

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