Category Archives: Uncategorized

Tableau 10 Tweaks


The #Tableau10 Roadshow visited Washington DC yesterday to show off some of their latest data visualization product improvements. Besides a new Navigation bar and some new fatter fonts for usability there were a few other interesting new features highlighted. To help with some of the data munging exercises you can now do inner database joins and customize geographic territories. In addition, there is simplified access to more advanced analytics functions, as well as, mobile version of Tableau for the Google’s Android platform.

Besides seeing the new features there was a session on best visualizations of all time. The key takeaways were to make sure you use a viz that show overall trends and outliers, but make sure not to clutter with to much information in single viz. I have found a handful of key data points is the maximum for humans process. Start with a map if possible since it is an image that helps people put data in geographic context. Enable exploratory analytics since you never know all the questions your audience may ask. Finally package the visualizations as a story. Start with the situation or problem to be address by the data then the decision recommendations or actions taken.  Finally what was the result of the analysis and recommended action. Or in short what I like to call the three Ds: Data, Decision, & Done!

AWS Summit


Over last two days I attended the Amazon Web Services Public Sector Summit and had the opportunity to observe several great customer stories on how public sector organizations are leveraging the AWS platform to improve services to their respective constituencies . My interest are primarily in the analytics and IoT arena. Out of 70 session I have just a handful of stories to relay and I am sure there are many more just as impactful. The most impressive public sector digital transformations to the cloud include the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs and the World Bank primarily because of the speed at which these CIOs are driving the change.

LaVerne H. Council. the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) the Assistant Secretary for Information and Technology (OI&T) and Chief Information Officer (CIO) oversees the day-to-day activities of VA’s $4 billion IT budget. Her focus has been to aggressively align resources and measurements with the agency’s mission. By focusing on outcomes verse activities she has been able to create some interesting solutions to better serve our veterans. The linked FCW articles does a good job talking about the transform she is driving at the VA.

World Bank’s Stephanie von Friedeburg is the CIO who has driven a wholesale shift of email infrastructure and 250 applications portfolio to cloud platforms. Here is link to Peter High’s interview in Forbes about how she started the journey.

There were also a lot of interesting city specific case studies from the AWS City on a Cloud competition. To wrap it up a very insightful closing keynote with Andy Jassy, CEO and Teresa Carlson, VP WWPS Here is the video link to the Fireside Chat.


Snow Storm Coming To Big Data

In last month I observed two briefings about the impending snow storm coming to Big Data. Not that winter is soon upon us, but because of the blizzards of information flowing into organizations today. There are a couple of vendors building solutions to battle the on going storm. There is Amazon’s Snowball for moving data and Snowflake a new SaaS database solution for  getting a handle on your data.

The Snowball  helps with the ever growing challenge some enterprise organizations have with Big Data and how do they move it all into the cloud. Amazon rolled out the Snowball product at the ReInvent User Conference to address just this problem. It is a 50 Terabyte suitcase which can be used in parallel to ship petabytes of data back to their data centers. The main reason for this solution is that it just takes to long to ship the data over current net infrastructure.  Also, there is the  cost and complexity to bump up bandwidth to move petabytes of data from on premise to the cloud. If you want to try their is an Amazon blog link suggesting Moving Big Data into the Cloud.

The Snowflake helps optimize the performance of the data once you get it into the cloud. Gartner named them Cool Vendor in DBMS category in early 2015. They call themselves an elastic data warehouse service.  The automate a lot of administration functions when moving to the cloud based to reduce cost of management by leveraging multi-structured shared data. See details on interview of founder Bob Muglia at VMworld 2015.

Don’t get caught in the blizzard of data and make your snowflakes into snowballs and get your data to the cloud faster on the latest state of the art cloud DBMS.

Big Data Tag Cloud

DataTagCloud_Color of The Big Data Buzz words including Big Data, Data Science, Data Scientist, Data Analytics, Data Analysis, Data Visualization, Predictive Analytics, Statistical Analysis, Business Intelligence, Data Discovery, Data Mining, Machine learning, logarithmic regression, least squares regression, K-Means Analysis, business analytics, marketing analytics, R Studio, Tableau, Splunk, Qlik, Alteryx, Hadoop, NoSQL, Mongo DB, AWS, Azure, MapReduce, HIVE, PIG, GitHub, Python, C, C#, C++, Data pipeline


We are morphing from digital media campaign management to marketing analytics and data visualizations. There are projections for a shortage of data scientist with the accumulation of Big Data so we aim to fill the gap.  I am currently exploring pilot projects to build client portfolio. If you need to evaluate data analytics/visualization tools,  build proof of concepts or start a pilot. DigiFutures can help.