Algorithms are everywhere

What  is an algorithm anyway?


As per Wikipedia-

an algorithm  is a step-by-step procedure for calculations. Algorithms are used for calculation, data processing, and automated reasoning.

An algorithm is an effective method expressed as a finite list of well-defined instructions  for calculating a function.  Starting from an initial state and initial input (perhaps empty),  the instructions describe a computation that, when executed, proceeds through a finite  number of well-defined successive states, eventually producing “output” and terminating at a final ending state. The transition from one state to the next is not necessarily deterministic; some algorithms, known as randomized algorithms, incorporate random input

Where do I hear the word algorithm being used?  Or the wat er cooler version- algols

I hear it everywhere- in newspapers  especially GUARDIAN and NEW YORK TIMES  

From search to security: the five most important algorithms in tech

  1. Pagerank – how Google calculates search results
  2. Public key cryptography – keeping credit card data secure
  3. Correcting errors (in CDs)
  4. Protecting passwords (cryptographic hash function)
  5. Perlin noise: generating landscapes in games

In Presentations-

Screenshot from 2013-10-08 10:19:03

But Google NGrams thinks algorithms is flat in books

Screenshot from 2013-10-08 10:28:37

and Google Trends think the word is actually declining. But India remains a top user of searching for algorithms Screenshot from 2013-10-08 10:27:03

But algorithms are increasing in ArXiv articles Screenshot from 2013-10-08 10:43:24

and there is a bit of up and down in Algorithms Jobs

What do you think- do you hear the word too much or too little?

Cloud Computing – can be evil

Cloud Computing can be evil because-

1) Most browsers are owned by for profit corporations . Corporations can be evil, sometimes

And corporations can go bankrupt. You can back up data locally, but try backing up a corporation.

2) The content on your web page can be changed using translator extensions . This has interesting ramifications as in George Orwell. You may not be even aware of subtle changes introduced in your browser in the way it renders the html or some words using keywords from a browser extension app.

Imagine a new form of language called Politically Correct Truthspeak, and that can be in English but using machine learning learn to substitute politically sensitive words with Govt sanctioned words.

3) Your DNS and IP settings can be redirected using extensions. This means if a Govt passes a law- you can be denied the websites using just the browser not even the ISP.

Thats an extreme scenario for a authoritative govt creating its own version of Mafiaafire Redirector.

So how to keep the cloud computer honest?Move some stuff to the desktop

How to keep desktop computing efficient?Use some more cloud computing

It is not an OR but an AND function in which some computing can be local, some shared and some in the cloud.


Quantitative Modeling for Arbitrage Positions in Ad KeyWords Internet Marketing

Assume you treat an ad keyword as an equity stock. There are slight differences in the cost for advertising for that keyword across various locations (Zurich vs Delhi) and various channels (Facebook vs Google) . You get revenue if your website ranks naturally in organic search for the keyword, and you have to pay costs for getting traffic to your website for that keyword.
An arbitrage position is defined as a riskless profit when cost of keyword is less than revenue from keyword. We take examples of Adsense  and Adwords primarily.
There are primarily two types of economic curves on the foundation of which commerce of the  internet  resides-
1) Cost Curve- Cost of Advertising to drive traffic into the website  (Google Adwords, Twitter Ads, Facebook , LinkedIn ads)
2) Revenue Curve – Revenue from ads clicked by the incoming traffic on website (like Adsense, LinkAds, Banner Ads, Ad Sharing Programs , In Game Ads)
The cost and revenue curves are primarily dependent on two things
1) Type of KeyWord-Also subdependent on
a) Location of Prospective Customer, and
b) Net Present Value of Good and Service to be eventually purchased
For example , keyword for targeting sales of enterprise “business intelligence software” should ideally be costing say X times as much as keywords for “flower shop for birthdays” where X is the multiple of the expected payoffs from sales of business intelligence software divided by expected payoff from sales of flowers (say in Location, Daytona Beach ,Florida or Austin, Texas)
2) Traffic Volume – Also sub-dependent on Time Series and
a) Seasonality -Annual Shoppping Cycle
b) Cyclicality– Macro economic shifts in time series
The cost and revenue curves are not linear and ideally should be continuous in a definitive exponential or polynomial manner, but in actual reality they may have sharp inflections , due to location, time, as well as web traffic volume thresholds
Type of Keyword – For example ,keywords for targeting sales for Eminem Albums may shoot up in a non linear manner after the musician dies.
The third and not so publicly known component of both the cost and revenue curves is factoring in internet industry dynamics , including relative market share of internet advertising platforms, as well as percentage splits between content creator and ad providing platforms.
For example, based on internet advertising spend, people belive that the internet advertising is currently heading for a duo-poly with Google and Facebook are the top two players, while Microsoft/Skype/Yahoo and LinkedIn/Twitter offer niche options, but primarily depend on price setting from Google/Bing/Facebook.
It is difficut to quantify  the elasticity and efficiency of market curves as most literature and research on this is by in-house corporate teams , or advisors or mentors or consultants to the primary leaders in a kind of incesteous fraternal hold on public academic research on this.
It is recommended that-
1) a balance be found in the need for corporate secrecy to protest shareholder value /stakeholder value maximization versus the need for data liberation for innovation and grow the internet ad pie faster-
2) Cost and Revenue Curves between different keywords, time,location, service providers, be studied by quants for hedging inetrent ad inventory or /and choose arbitrage positions This kind of analysis is done for groups of stocks and commodities in the financial world, but as commerce grows on the internet this may need more specific and independent quants.
3) attention be made to how cost and revenue curves mature as per level of sophistication of underlying economy like Brazil, Russia, China, Korea, US, Sweden may be in different stages of internet ad market evolution.
For example-
A study in cost and revenue curves for certain keywords across domains across various ad providers across various locations from 2003-2008 can help academia and research (much more than top ten lists of popular terms like non quantitative reports) as well as ensure that current algorithmic wightings are not inadvertently given away.
Part 2- of this series will explore the ways to create third party re-sellers of keywords and measuring impacts of search and ad engine optimization based on keywords.

Creating Pages on Google Plus for some languages

So I decided to create Pages on Google Plus for my favorite programming languages.

a programming language that lets you work more quickly and integrate your systems more effectively

Add to circles

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Ajay Ohri

Ajay Ohri's profile photo

Ajay Ohri  –
Ajay Ohri shared a Google+ page with you.
Structured Query Language
Leading statistical language since 1960’s especially in sociology and market research
The leading statistical language in the world
The leading statistical language since 1970’s



These are in accordance with Google’s Policies  Continue reading “Creating Pages on Google Plus for some languages”

Use R for Business- Competition worth $ 20,000 #rstats

All you contest junkies, R lovers and general change the world people, here’s a new contest to use R in a business application


$20,000 in Prizes for Users Solving Business Problems with R


PALO ALTO, Calif. – September 1, 2011 – Revolution Analytics, the leading commercial provider of R software, services and support, today announced the launch of its “Applications of R in Business” contest to demonstrate real-world uses of applying R to business problems. The competition is open to all R users worldwide and submissions will be accepted through October 31. The Grand Prize winner for the best application using R or Revolution R will receive $10,000.

The bonus-prize winner for the best application using features unique to Revolution R Enterprise – such as itsbig-data analytics capabilities or its Web Services API for R – will receive $5,000. A panel of independent judges drawn from the R and business community will select the grand and bonus prize winners. Revolution Analytics will present five honorable mention prize winners each with $1,000.

“We’ve designed this contest to highlight the most interesting use cases of applying R and Revolution R to solving key business problems, such as Big Data,” said Jeff Erhardt, COO of Revolution Analytics. “The ability to process higher-volume datasets will continue to be a critical need and we encourage the submission of applications using large datasets. Our goal is to grow the collection of online materials describing how to use R for business applications so our customers can better leverage Big Analytics to meet their analytical and organizational needs.”

To enter Revolution Analytics’ “Applications of R in Business” competition Continue reading “Use R for Business- Competition worth $ 20,000 #rstats”

Search Engine Advertising sweet spot for arbitrage.

Assume I am a blogger using both Adsense and Adwords.

Suppose Adwords costs me X dollars per click, and Adsense pays me Y dollars per click.

Then a unique arbitrage opportunity would arise if

Y times CTR on my blog > X times CTR on my Ad Campaign

Is it possible. Theoretically yes? Long Tail of Internet yes.

However since there is a lag of time in which the Rates would converge , the Adsense rate would go lower or Adwords rate would go higher

Is there a tool that you can use to pump keywords with short times arbitrage opportunities , much like trading algols and quants do in finance.

Just asking !

 Hint- Its a trick math puzzle 🙂