/* ---- Google Analytics Code Below */

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Millennials and Food Shopping

In Smartblogs.   How will they be won over? " ... Millennials are much like the young versions of previous generations, except they grew up in a digital age and lived through the Great Recession, circumstances that affect the way they shop, Hartman Group CEO Laurie Demeritt writes. Young consumers distrust marketing messages, connect with brands based on price and personality and seek out fresh, convenient prepared foods ... "

Importance of Emotional Machines

Facebook AI director Yann LeCun on the importance of emotional machines   " ... “Emotions are often the result of predicting a likely outcome. For example, fear comes when we are predicting that something bad (or unknown) is going to happen to us. Love is an emotion that evolution built into us because we are social animals and we need to reproduce and take care of each other. Future AI systems that interact with humans will have to have these emotions too.” ... '.  Interesting argument, but I think we would accept something as very intelligent, even without very much emotion.

Network as Nervous System

A reasonable analogy for digital enterprise.    And Analytics should be the brain, placing the network n contexts to gather as much useful data as possible.  " ... Business and network strategies will become more integrated as the network becomes the nervous system of the digital business ... "  

Evaluating the Concept of Web Rank

Simple game based demonstration video about how search and in particular how web sites can be evaluated via their interconnections with hyperlinks.  Good to show kids, but also for adults to demonstrate how math about probabilities can be demonstrated via a proposed experiment.   Also an example of simulation methodology.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

July August Analytics Magazine

July August 2014 Analytics Magazine

Why Do Analytics Projects Fail? by Haluk Demirkan and Bulent Dal
Not just another IT project: Key considerations for deep analytics on big data, learning and insights.

Real-Time Text Analytics
by Aveek Mukhopadhyay and Roger Barga
How a cloud-based analytical engine yields instant insight using unstructured social media data.

Analytics Transforms a 'Dinosaur'
by Brenda Dietrich, Emily Plachy and Maureen Norton
The story of how industry giant IBM not only survived but thrived by realizing business value from big data.

The Future of Forecasting by Jack Yurkiewicz
Making predictions from hard and fast data: Biennial survey of popular software for analytics professionals.

Executive Edge:
Six Ways of Value-Creation Through Analytics in E-commerce by Rohit Tandon
It has become imperative for organizations to be on the customers' online radar with respect to new products or services and to be able to influence their choices.

Dysfunctional Teams and Healthy Ecosystems

In FastCompany: An interesting view.   Somewhat over segmented.  Have seen some of these examples.   It then suggests healthier ecosystems.  Good idea, but also harder to implement in many cultures.   And where are the rewards to make these systems operate beyond just 'leadership'?

" ... In nature, one quality of healthy ecosystems is their vibrant and interdependent biodiversity, enabling adaptation to environmental shifts and threats. Healthy leadership teams, especially in today’s dynamic world, display divergent perspectives that they respect and value. They avoid getting stuck because they can evaluate options based on data and members’ individual knowledge, and ultimately find places of agreement. They see conflicting opinions as dilemmas to grapple with rather than fights to win. ... "

Augmented Collaboration: Cisco Spring Roll

Some of this discovered rather late, but Cisco provides new a prototype of collaboration features for its Telepresence brand.  Called Spring Roll.  Eweek discusses.  And a demonstration.  Collaborative and interactive sharing of data is a particular interest in the enterprise.  A curved screen is featured, but that is not enough.

You need to provide focus on the task at hand, and the best focus today is data.   See in particular work done with Business Sphere. Telepresence does not appear to be addressing this strongly, but should.  It deals with the display aspects and not interaction with the data.   Send me more if you have more about possibilities regarding collaborative data in Telepresence, or elsewhere.

See also in BizJournals.  And more on the prototype.

Data Analytics Ranked High in C-Suite

In Research Mag:     " ... 56% of consumer goods and retail business leaders cite data analytics as being important to their firm’s strategy, according to a recent survey.

This makes it the highest-ranked strategic area in the survey. The annual Global Top of Mind survey, run by Oxford Economics on behalf of The Consumer Goods Forum and KPMG International, gathered the views of 469 C-Suite and senior executives across 32 countries.   ... " 

Monday, July 21, 2014

Whats New in Social Science?

Am a long time reader of The Edge.    So What's new in social science?   Pretty massive and have only peeked at it, but take your time ....

" ...  Now, for the first time, we are pleased to present the program in its entirety, all ten talks and discussions comprising nearly six hours of EDGE Video and a downloadable PDF of the 58,000-word transcript. We intend to follow up this September with HeadCon '14, plans to which will be announced.

The great biologist Ernst Mayr (the "Darwin of the 20th Century") once said to me: "Edge is a conversation." And like any conversation, it is evolving. And what a conversation it is!

Permalink: http://edge.org/event/headcon-13-whats-new-in-social-science ... " 

IT as Creatives in the Enterprise

In CIO:  How could this not be so?  An efficient means to gather data, pass it to the parts of the entperprise that need it the most and leverage it with continually evolving analytical techniques, available in and outside the enterprise.  All partitionable on handy Clouds. The creatives will be needed to work the details.

Simulating Cardiovascular Drugs

The idea of this kind of in-silico drug testing has been around for a long time, we worked briefly with an effort at the University of California San Diego in a related effort.    Simulation is a powerful capability, if you can build a robust and sufficient model of the context involved.  Here another good step forward.

Facebook Buy Button Test

In Retailwire:  Will people buy directly on Facebook?  Possibly, but I have never see FB as a commercial context.   A test is underway.  " ... Users on desktop or mobile will be able to click the Buy call-to-action button on ads and Page posts to purchase a product directly from a business without leaving Facebook. How appealing do you expect Facebook's "Buy" button will be to Facebook users?  ... " 

High Resolution Flexible Display

Flexible screens continue to emerge.  We examined them for applications like advanced packaging and integrated shelf displays.  Its likely now that they will be used for wearable applications as well.

Watson and Academic Institutions

Have had some discussions on this concept.  There is considerable interest in academia, but the ideas have to be tied to course structure, AND be of real interest to hiring companies.  You have to work both sides of the knowledge chain.  IBM News room - 2014-05-07 Seven of the Nation’s Leading Technology Institutions Unveil Cognitive Computing Courses Leveraging IBM Watson.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Project Adam AI for Visual Recognition

There is more going on in AI than just IBM's Watson, here more focused, addressing one of the most important tasks of sensory recognition.  In TechTimes:     See also comparisons to similar work by Google.

 " ... Microsoft is developing an artificial intelligence (AI) system called "Project Adam" that can perform visual recognition tasks faster than any other system currently available.

Microsoft Research, a research division of the company, says that Project Adam enhances the learning ability of computers. With Project Adam computer systems can absorb data and teach themselves.

The company demonstrated Project Adam at its Faculty Summit in Redmond. As part of the demonstration, the company brought dogs of different breeds and showed how technology can distinguish between them in real time.

Project Adam can be very important for the company as several technology companies are working hard to develop AI and predictive systems that can be useful in the mobile technologies. Previously, Google was said to be using a network of around 16,000 computers to teach itself to identify pictures of cats. ... "

Thinkvine and Damon Ragusa

Have followed Thinkvine here for some time, out enterprise connected with them and have touched base  number of times since their creation in 2000 by Damon Ragusa.     They have done some very novel  work integrating agent based modeling simulation, marketing mix and related problems.  I like their new video on their offerings.  Simulation is a very powerful analytic technique to understand marketing operations.  In the news today, Damon Ragusa is back at the helm.  More details in today's Cincinnati Enquirer.  Hope to reconnect in the coming weeks.

Lost Links

Received another query about links that no longer point to the information that they should.  This is a common thing on the Web.   Unless what you are pointing to is a entity that has the resources to maintain their content, it happens.   You can ask, but usually I don't have the time to search out the lost information. It is true that some of these things can be found somewhere on the 'Internet Archive',  but I will not generally be re-linking them.

Wearables in the Enterprise

Will wearables be widespread in the enterprise?  Well not too many years ago I could not have imagined hand held computer-phones there.    An interview with Bill Briggs of Deloitte.  " ... Deloitte Digital, a mix of ‘ creative, strategy, user experience, and engineering talent, and technology services to help clients harness disruptive digital technologies to redesign “business as usual” – to engage differently with customers, change how work gets done, and rethink the very core of their markets’. He seemed like my kind of human. ... " 

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Learning from Extreme Consumers

In Experientia:  " ... Traditional market research methods focus on understanding the average experiences of average consumers. This focus leads to gaps in our knowledge of consumer behavior and often fails to uncover insights that can drive revolutionary, rather than evolutionary innovation.  ... "  ... "

Forbes Sells Majority Stake to International Investors

This was of interest because I had a very small connection to Forbes.   'To accelerate growth they say ... '.  I liked their coverage of technical and management issues.  How this will change it is unclear.

 ' ... Forbes Family Welcomes Significant Investment by Investor Group  –

–    Investors Are Committed to Forbes’ Brand, Strategy, Values and Management  –

–    Forbes Family Will Retain Significant Interest; Current Management Team Will Remain in Place; Steve Forbes Will Continue as Chairman and Editor-in-Chief, Mike Perlis as President and CEO  –

–        Forbes Media will remain a privately-held, independent company headquartered in the U.S.; Company’s Asian business will continue to be led by Forbes Media CEO/Asia Will Adamopoulos – ....' 

On Mindful Neuroscience

Short BBC piece that barely covers the topic.  Mentions a number of reading styled efforts underway. Less about mind reading than it is about behavior understanding in context.

Amazon Bundles Books

Amazon is Bundling. It has been talked about and tested  for a while, and I received an offer yesterday.  To pay a fixed monthly price for full online access to any number of a group of 600K books.   It's called bundling, and similar to what Netflix does.  Bundling can add the value to the seller of removing statistical purchase variation created my consumer behavior.  Would like to see those analytics.  At first when you read it, it sounds like you get access to the whole library, but no, not all publishers are participating, and like Netflix, what you would really like or need is often not included.   And my interests are eclectic.  Not participating for now.

Oracle Social Intelligence and Linkedin

In CWorld:  It is interesting that Linkedin is leveraging these kids of analytical techniques against the data that we are openly opening providing here.  Should this require further disclosure about what they are doing?

 " ... Oracle has hooked up its SRM (social relationship management) software suite to LinkedIn, a move to give marketing and customer support staffers a way to reach the business-oriented social network's 300 million users.

The LinkedIn integration provides the ability to publish LinkedIn Company and Showcase pages, which can be targeted according to factors such as geographic location, company size and industry, Oracle said in its announcement on Wednesday.

It will also be possible to interact with commenters on these pages, Oracle said. There's a degree of analytics as well, such as reports on the number of comments a particular posting generated, according to Oracle. ... " 

Friday, July 18, 2014

Migrating to the Cloud

In EETimes:

 " ... IBM is limbering up its cloud storage. Already committing $1.2 billion to establish for-rent datacenters in every country that needs them, today IBM announced a complete hardware/software/storage capability for cloud-based and hybrid users at a claimed 90 percent savings. Key is its software-defined storage-as-a-service, the newest element of IBM's software-defined storage portfolio. Called "Elastic Storage on Cloud," the new capability offered by SoftLayer (which IBM acquired last year) is an outgrowth of the Watson data management system, which beat the world champion humans at TV game show Jeopardy.

"With Elastic Storage on Cloud, we are addressing a new generation of workloads -- cloud analytics and mobile social [trending] -- which are heavily reliant on unstructured data, files, and objects," Bernie Spang, vice president of strategy for software-defined environment told EE Times. "You can have data that needs to be high performance in a flash cache on the server for high performance while moving seldom-used data that does not need low-latency access off to tape -- and it's not archived, it's active. It's just policy-based transparent movement of data to tape for up to 90 percent cost savings." ...'

Business Value in Content Marketing

In Clickz:  Includes a step by step look at what this means:

" ... A new study shows marketers can't tie business value back to their content marketing tactics. So how can marketers better measure the success of their content marketing campaigns? ...
Yes, it's a bit of an attention-grabber. And, yes, it's slightly misleading. But the new Forrester, Business Marketing Association (BMA), and Online Marketing Institute Content Marketing Study found that 83 percent of marketers cannot tie back business value to their content marketing efforts. In short, the study reveals that while most marketers know there is value in content marketing, most are not creating good content, let alone measuring its business impact.  ... "
Definition and history of content marketing.

Judging Risk is Difficult

Why we underestimate risk.
" ... In hindsight, many risks seem obvious.  And when we do take the time to evaluate potential risks, there is often not much that is profound about them.  Yet so many of us fall prey to unforeseen risks, believing that they came out of nowhere or that they could not have been anticipated.  While this may be true in some cases, most of the time risk blindness occurs due to the way our brains are wired. Here are three reasons why we’re blind to risk, and what we can do about it. ... " 

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Paths to Learning

Stephen Few reviews a recent book on the Science Learning.  A good topic, because we still have much to learn about learning.  Worth a look, I plan to read:  " ... Many of the strongly held and frequently espoused notions about learning practices (e.g., good study habits), which seem intuitive, are dead wrong. Scientific investigation into the learning brain has revealed a great deal, especially in recent years, but the findings seldom reach the teachers and learners who would benefit from them. Peter Brown, Henry L. Roediger III, and Mark A. McDaniel have responded to this problem in the form of a wonderful new book titled Make It Stick: The Science of Successful Learning (2014). ... ".  I do wonder if some of these methods can then be transferred over to machine learning?

Riken Research

A long time research resource on Japan, Riken Research writes:

" ... The latest printed edition of RIKEN Research, containing a selection of articles published on our website, has just come out. In our Perspectives and Places section, we highlight the RIKEN Center for Quantitative Biology, and Highlights feature research being carried out throughout our organization.

Readers may notice that it has a new look. As part of our move away from print and toward online media, we decided to issue the magazine four times a year, with more pages, and to give it a new look designed to make it feel a little more like a magazine and less like a report. ... " 

Big Data, Marketing and Finance

Some thin case studies in the HBR blogs.  But it is clear that the deeper use of analytics techniques on growing and complex gathered data will from now on be essential to running the marketing side of financial businesses.

Pipelines and Forecast Timing

In E-Commercetimes: The timing of forecast value is an important aspect.  It's part of the decision process that is often forgotten.

" ... Analytics should be able to tell you the likelihood of each deal's completion in time for you to take action if the prediction is unfavorable. If each deal is somewhat different, then comparing each with the historic deals most like them will provide a truer indicator of close probability than simply comparing deals through something as general-purpose as deal stage. The difference is important. ... " 

MOOCs and MBA Programs

In Knowledge@Wharton, Interview and video:

" ... In a new research paper, Christian Terwiesch, professor of operations and information management at Wharton, and Karl Ulrich, vice dean of innovation at the school, examine the impact that massive open online courses (MOOCs) will have on business schools and MBA programs. In their study — titled, “Will Video Kill the Classroom Star? The Threat and Opportunity of MOOCs for Full-time MBA Programs” — they identify three possible scenarios that business schools face not just as a result of MOOCs, but also because of the technology embedded in them. In an intereview with Knowledge@Wharton, Terwiesch and Ulrich discuss their findings. ... " 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

IBM and Apple Partnership for Mobile

I was struck by this announcement yesterday because it includes many of the needs we addressed in the enterprise when we understood that mobile capabilities would change the way we did work.  We would have to provide new functionality to focus efforts and deliver security.  And provide important data anytime, anywhere, with augmenting analytics.  

Addressing questions like: " ... What public apps should I use?  What Apps should we have written to address our special needs?  How do I make sure the right data is available and secure? ... "

Will continue to follow the details.

" ... Apple and IBM yesterday announced an exclusive partnership that teams the market-leading strengths of each company to transform enterprise mobility through a new class of business apps—bringing IBM’s big data and analytics capabilities to iPhone and iPad. ... " 

See the MobileFirst website and the supporting blog  and press release.

And the impact on Microsoft.

Searching for Live Hangouts

Interesting idea to search for live events in Google Hangouts.  In test.  Have now used hangouts a number of times for small group communications.  Simple interface, and is usually without problems.

IT is Cracking the C Suite

In the HBR Blog: Well yes, but it has been there selectively, for a long time.  Well understood for several decades that its values are not overhead, but essential. Just managed differently in different enterprises.

Creating Future IT Organizations

In CIOInsight:  Transformation yes, but also making things work efficiently.

" ...  If I have one major complaint about how IT executives have seen their role, it is that, generally speaking, they think too small. For many IT executives, IT has been solely operational and financial. It has been merely a means to reduce costs and improve organizational efficiencies. IT executives have rarely sought to develop technologies that had the power to transform—whether that was to transform their business or human lives. Yet, Benetech shows us that technology can play a vital role in just this kind of transformation. And I believe that as we look to the future, it is the companies that use technology as a transformative engine that will be rewarded.  ... "

Samsung and SmartThings

In GigaOM: Samsung is in negotiation to buy home automation company SmartThings.   The connection makes lots of sense.  Though as I have mentioned here before, I do hope that the user experience under Samsung is improved.

" ...  Samsung is in talks to purchase SmartThings, the smart home startup that has been trying to make home automation a mainstream option for consumers who aren’t afraid to spend a bit of time programming their devices. According to TechCrunch, Samsung would pay around $200 million with an eye toward getting in front of Google with its Nest acquisition in January. ... "

 Having looked at SmartThings I do recall that their interface was too much about programming, which would make it less than appealing for most.   Also, my own experience with current Samsung devices interacting has been less than perfect. Lots of work to do it seems.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Thermoelectric Materials

In Tech Review: Turning waste heat into energy.  With an abundantly available material.  " ... California-based Alphabet Energy plans to begin selling a new type of material that can turn heat into electricity. Unlike previous thermoelectrics, as such materials are known, it is abundant, cheap, and nontoxic. ... " 

New Compounds from Microbe Interaction

Synthetic biology (WP Overview)  is of interest for product development, some readers of this blog have indicated an interest in how this domain could link to analytic methods.  You will see some pieces like the below appearing as I explore the domain.  Do chime in if you know of other resources.

When microbes join forces, useful new compounds emerge
In a recent paper, SFI External Professor Elhanen Borenstein and co-authors show that when living together, communities of microbial species commonly produce novel, potentially useful compounds that single species growing alone do not produce. They begin to define the mechanisms and time signatures of such "emergent biosynthetic capacities" and present a computational framework for modeling, exploring, tracking, and predicting this phenomenon in simple two-species communities.

Such enhanced metabolic capacities represent a promising route to many medical, environmental, and industrial applications and call for the development of a predictive, systems-level understanding of synergistic microbial capacity, the authors write. 

Full paper, technical but beginning paragraphs are useful and readable.

Major Urban Data Observatory

Interesting concept, in Venturebeat:  A means to observe and compare data about major cities.  And I hope visualizing related analytics.   Sounds akin to work that was done with P&G's Business Sphere.

TED co-founder Richard Saul Wurman’s Urban Observatory is now a virtual reality.  [ I will look into this deeper and report more here ]

The Urban Observatory is a multi-media interactive exhibit culled from big data that is displayed on screens to let viewers compare and contrast data from the world’s largest cities. Fifty-five of the world’s largest metropolitan cities shared their data to create what Wurman is calling the globe’s first real public observatory.

The observatory is being unveiled today at the Esri User Conference in San Diego. Wurman produced the project with geographic information systems provider Esri. Early next year, in February 2015, the Urban Observatory will make its way to the Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC, where the exhibit will be permanently housed. .... "

Apple's Swift Language

In Wired: Have heard of it, but never even looked at the code. Will it remake computer programming?  I like new ways of thinking about the process of logical control.  Now available to some outside Apple.

' ... Chris Lattner spent a year and a half creating a new programming language—a new way of designing, building, and running computer software—and he didn’t mention it to anyone, not even his closest friends and colleagues.

He started in the summer of 2010, working at night and on weekends, and by the end of the following year, he’d mapped out the basics of the new language. That’s when he revealed his secret to the top executives at his company, and they were impressed enough to put a few other seasoned engineers on the project. Then, after another eighteen months, it became a “major focus” for the company, with a huge team of developers working alongside Lattner, and that meant the new language would soon change the world of computing. Lattner, you see, works for Apple. .... '

ZDNet article on the changes.  Apparently you can get access to it with a free registration.

Apple's Informative Swift Blog.

And in the WP: Swift the Programming Language.

Why Hire More People?

How to know if you should hire more people?
Organizational psychologist and leadership specialist David Javitch said there are several signs employers should look for when determining whether to expand their staff. Evaluating current employees' skill sets and work levels, writing detailed job descriptions and providing immediate feedback as new hires navigate their responsibilities are among his tips .... 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Computing Now: The Web at 25

The World Wide Web is now only 25 years old.  It seems much longer.  IEEE Computing Now discusses the birthday, and the future of the Web. It will be here for some time, but what will it look like, connect and deliver?

 " ... In a mere 25 years, the Web has irrevocably transformed the world. It has become indispensable, impacting nearly every aspect of human activities in practically all fields. It continues to leap ahead offering new capabilities and extending its reach and utility. The Web has indeed become the most influential technology of our times, although it hasn't reached its zenith and we've yet to recognize and embrace its full potential.

This issue of Computing Now commemorates the Web's 25th anniversary by highlighting its genesis, progress, and potential. We invite you to comment below and share your thoughts on how the Web will be in the next quarter century .... "  

D-Wave Gets more Funding

Have followed D-Wave Quantum computing since its inception.   The WSJ reports on new funding it has received.   I talked to them about potential applications in the enterprise.  They are still the only quantum computing company that has major commercial clients (Lockheed and Google)  Still, there remains controversy on what they are supplying today.  Worth continued observations.  I will.

More in CWorld.

Big Data in Sports

In Linkedin: How Germany Beat Brazil. And how Big Data Helped.  Via my colleague : Ali Rebaie: Big Data Analyst and Consultant , Top Big Data Influencer, Public Speaker and Trainer.   See also SAP's alleged involvement with World Cup big data.  Also how Bayesian networks have been used in this space.

Tiny Watson

You would not think size would be a big issue, given what can be done in a smartphone.  But the goal is a good one:  In CWorld:

" ... The company ... will show a smartphone-size prototype microcomputer that integrates CPUs and circuitry typically spread out over large motherboards. IBM initially hopes to build a "datacenter in a box" holding a swarm of these computers, and research will pave the way for even smaller computers, said Ronald Luijten, an IBM researcher.

IBM wants to build a version of its Watson supercomputer the size of a pizza box, containing a series of such microcomputers. Watson made waves by winning a Jeopardy contest in 2011. The Watson server today is the size of three stacked pizza boxes. ... " 

Minds and Brands, Taking Off.

Piece on how a number of brands are using neuromarketing.  Nontechnical.  Some examples I had not heard of.  Nielson pitches its own acquisitions:

" ... To be sure, neuroscience adds a high-tech and high-touch spin to a sophisticated but very low-tech organ: the brain. "Neuromarketing offers a more robust picture of how consumers engage with marketing and product materials. It provides insights that otherwise aren't available," said Michael E. Smith, director of industry relations for the Consumer Neuroscience Branch at Nielson. Smith told CMO.com that he believes the concept is now in the "takeoff" phase and is on the way toward becoming "serious business." ... " 

IKEA and Instagram

IKEA using Instagram.   " .... IKEA Creates an Entire Website Inside Instagram ... Russian Agency Instinct Uses Tagging Feature in a New Way ... "