Yahoo Finance for Analysis-Indian ITES

A great graphical tool is Yahoo finance- As a test case I took the Indian Outsourcing and IT industry and compared their stock performance for the whole of 2008.

Note I am using the website which has a great 10 sec method of shortening urls, just like

You can view the graph here and add in last year’s value including SIFY (Satyam’s arm here

Business case- As you can see, the Indian IT sector lost tremendous value in 2008 , perhaps too much so you can see the sharp pullbacks in the last one week ( WNS pulled almost 18 % up). One view I belive this industry will do well to adopt is stop being an Information Technology Enabled Services (ITES) and start moving towards Information Technology Enabled Products ( ITEP)

Updated- I didnt factor in Satyam’s acounting scandal in the analysis.If you click the link above now – you would note the impact such events have on domains ( and curiously happen again and again.It also leads to better data mining solutions than simplistic history repeats itself models).

Yahoo finance is extremely user friendly and the design of the interface is sweet,short and simple. But the biggest weakness is ( and it seems like a Yahoo weakness) – there are almost no ads compared to Google Finance which focuses on the ad placement and relevancy over anything else. I hope this site endures it is a great boon for analysts and even stock market researchers.


Interview: Roger Haddad, Founder of KXEN Automated Modeling Software

KXEN_logo_300dpi I first talked about KXEN,the automated modeling software  in this post

So I asked Roger Haddad ,its founder and CEO if he could give an email interview and Roger being the great guy he is , both remembered me from user analyst days as well worked in the holidays to give this interview. Before founding KXEN, Mr. Roger Haddad was president of Azlan France, the first network distributor in France. Under his management, sales revenues increased 850 percent in four years.In 1977, Mr. Haddad founded Metrologie International, a leading software and hardware provider, which went public on the Paris Stock Exchange in 1985. When Mr. Haddad left in 1991, Metrologie had 4,500 employees, $900M in revenue and subsidiaries in 13 European countries.Mr. Haddad holds a master’s degree in electrical metrology from George Washington University and a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Ecole Supérieure d’Electricité, Paris, France.


Ajay : What would your advice be to young professionals entering the job world today ?

Roger : If you are talking about Statisticians, I would tell them to concentrate on the data and the process rather than on the statistical orthodoxy

Ajay : What interested you most in being the head of KXEN. What is the best feature you like in KXEN. – both as a company and as a product.

Roger :To Make it happen !! Data mining is at its infancy, because SAS and others made it difficult to work with !! they made for an elite of people !!

KXEN role is to open this bottleneck and give power to the users – Analysts will help to train business users and get them confident with their findings.

As a product, I am always suprised by the quality of KXEN results in a fraction of the time compared to first generation workbench and automatically !! 🙂

Ajay : What areas has KXEN been most suitable for ? Biggest sucess story so far.

Roger : Classification, regression with thousands of variables and tricky data sets !! We have hundreds of success stories 

Ajay :Could you also comment on how the slowdown and recession would affect the analytics world in terms of newer solutions , Software as a service , more acceptance of trying out the unfamiliar etc ?

Roger : I believe the recession and the slowdown will push analytics further and particularly KXEN approach , since we allow corporations to do much more with less or with the same Team. We are seeing many Analytics Group being reduced and people calling on us to deliver what need to be delivered!!

Ajay : What areas would you rather not recommend KXEN? What other softwares would you recommend in those cases ?

Roger : I would not recommend KXEN in genetics – SVM would be more apropriate

Ajay : Asia has a nascent but high potential market. What are you Asian plans and any clients /case studies here ?

Roger:  We have a presence in every countries but in India – Japan is by far our best country and we have there a fantastic Distributor -WE also have Customers in China , in Asean too – We are looking for a good Distributor in India , but this seems quite difficult.(Note from Ajay – I decided to apply straight away)

Ajay : What is the biggest challenge you have faced while introducing KXEN to a wider audience.
Roger: THe resistance to Change and the fear of classical statisticians that they will loose their job !! in fact this never happened and on  the contrary they become hero in their Corporation after adopting KXEN

  Roger Haddad 1Founder and Chief Executive Officer

Mr. Haddad is responsible for overseeing the KXEN sales team, the distribution channel management, as well as the direction of the company and the strategic growth of the organization. With more than 30 years experience as an industry expert, Mr. Haddad is a forward-looking entrepreneur with an expertise in successfully running companies with multiple channels
of distribution. Mr. Haddad has a long and successful track record in developing new companies into profitable enterprises.

Smart Data Collective

Here is a great online community for decision scientists especially the ones reading these posts. It is called Smart Data Collective and it is hosted at

It works like a blog aggregator for specific topics and the quality of posts is quite nice. Just like your blogroll does for you and it can also help your blog, if you write to get some added views. Basically it works as a newpaper for data topics from featured posts by data bloggers. I joined it just over the year end , and  was able to both write and read on nice topics.


Some Self Promotion by humbly yours

And also, if you didnt notice , we had a revamped website at

Improvements include a better SEO url structure, new WordPress theme (disliked by many due to blue grey color) ,enhanced blogroll with labels, RSS feeds from NYT and DM Review besides my own poetry blog, and revamping the old pages. Let me know what you think about the change.

Happy New Year : 2009 Predictions and 2008 Recap

Here are some economic predictions I made at the start of 2008 –

1) Recessions -especially recessions that are anticipated and planned for always look worst at the beginning.

2) While some can cut spending the usual way for Govts is supply side (fed  rate cuts) for more money  , and demand side(Keynes) stimulus spending

3) Political costs is always a key policy decider in economic slow downs. We may see more bi partisan ship as parties work together for welfare projects in an election year

Basically the only prediction that I got correct was Number 9 –

9) We will have more interesting 2008 than 2007. That’s the economist in me speaking. As Alan Greenspan wrote we will live in the age of turbulence.

In fact that was the only thing Alan and I got correct the whole year , though I did switch to Keynesian spending in June , that’s before Ben Bernanke did but about 15 years after Paul Krugman did.

Anyway here are some economic predictions for 2009 ( economists , even pretend ones like me are rather stubborn)


)0( Price of Oil and Commodities will rebound by end of quarter 1. This would also be impacted by the auto industry in 2 months time and any consolidation there.

1) Entertaintment business will continue to grow. It may thrive as people have more time and more reason to get cheered up.Expect more shift to the web though not in the degree expected.Online entertainment will  further evolve. Expect more profitable online communities.

2) War focuses will shift from Iraq to Afghan-Pakistan ( it already has).Expect some more rumbles and surprises there.

Continue reading “Happy New Year : 2009 Predictions and 2008 Recap”

Virtual Softwares :Telecommuting 2

Here is a list of resources I got from a blog site called

with a wiki here

It is quite a nice simple site, with a great domain name, and is dedicated to virtualization softwares, especially for dummy terminal use and my favourite topic- telecommuting.(which I wrote earlier in the month)

Some of the sites highlighted are –I am adding two remote meeting softwares ( SharedView from MS and GotoMeeting besides the Google Docs site)



and Go To Meeting from


Besides the inevitable Google Docs

from which are quite good for collobrative work but can be used for remote working as well.


Unlimited Managed Systems edition: $499/administrator (MB423Z/A)

10 Managed Systems edition: $299/administrator (MB422Z/A)

Also includes an automator –

Continue reading “Virtual Softwares :Telecommuting 2”

R –Refcards and Basic I/O Operations

While working with a large number of files for data processing, I used the following R commands for data processing. Given that everyone needs to split as well merge and append data – I am just giving some code on splitting data based on parameters , and appending data as well as merging data.

Splitting Data Based on a Parameter.

The following divides the data into subsets which contain either Male or anything else in different datasets.

Input and Subset

Note the read.table command assigns the dataset name X in R environment from the file reference (path denoted by ….)

x <- read.table(....)
rowIndx <- grep("Male", x$col)
write.table(x[rowIndx,], file="match")
write.table(x[-rowIndx,], file="nomatch")

Suppose we need to divide the dataset into multiple data sets.

X17 <- subset(X, REGION == 17)

This is prefered to the technique -

X17 = X[REGION == 17,]


For putting the files back to the Windows environment you can use-

write.table(x,file="",row.names=TRUE,col.names=TRUE,sep=" ")


Lets say you have a large number of data files ( say csv files )

that you need to append (assuming the files are in same structure)

after performing basic operations on them.

>setwd("C:\\Documents and Settings\\admin\\My Documents\\Data")

Note this changes the working folder to folder you want it to be,

note the double slashes which are needed to define the path

>list.files(path = ".", pattern = NULL, all.files = FALSE, full.names = FALSE,recursive = FALSE, = FALSE)

The R output would be something like below

[1] "calk.csv"                                            "call.csv"                                           
[2]"calm.csv"                                            "caln.csv"                                           
[3]"calo.csv"                                            "calp.csv"                                           

For appending one file repeatedly (like ten times) you can use the command

file.append("A", rep("B", 10))

For Refcards on learning R , the best ones are –


A Software called Splunk

Splunk from is a software that helps

* Index and search all of your IT data generated by your Windows
desktops, servers and applications.
* See all data – registry, event logs, network and security device
logs, system performance – in a single, related view.
* Track down who installed what, when and where. Save and schedule
searches as proactive alerts to improve monitoring coverage over time.
* Speed up root-cause analysis and pinpoint which system is the
problem. Reports and dashboards let you keep watch across the servers
you manage.

You can use Splunk  in the following ( from the website)



Improve service levels and recover from problems faster.


Thwart attacks with quick, in-depth incident response.


E-Discovery, FFIEC, FISMA, HIPAA, PCI, SOX without disrupting operations.

Business Intelligence.

See your transactions as they happen.


Its quite nice and should be tried by IT administrators and server managers for analysis of logs. It is also now available in all Windows editions -Downloadable here

And it is free 🙂