Data Mining 2009- Using IPhone 3GS for Audio Interviews

I just used an I Phone 3GS for the interviews at Data Mining 2009 . The next time some one comes to your company claiming to be a social media expert to do a podcast or webcast etc. –

you can show them the I Phone and use the Voice Memos function to record it yourself.

Caveat audio- records at 1 MB/Minute and more than 5 minutes can be boring to listeners as well as Iphone can send only 5 mb files by email to yourself)

If you insist on doing more than 5 minute interviews- you can save it on the 80 Gb disc of the IPhone and use ITunes to set up your Podcast.

I believe that traditional PR needs to adapt and learn these techniques less they fail to adopt to the technology changes and this is especially true for public relations for technology companies.

The I Phone has a lot of features and you can even combine them with websites like www.ustream.com to create a Video Podcast.

For free.

Social Media and Analytics

TeraData has launched a terrific Facebook campaign. It’s got great video You Tube ads ( of the funny kind), lots of fans, and catchy slogans.

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Teradata/99985377449

This is an example of a company creating buzz by using social media. I kind of liked the idea of the free TeraData iphone application.

To quote recent announcements from Curt Monash’s blog (http://www.dbms2.com/2009/10/19/teradata-partners-2009/ ) –

Teradata is productizing “private cloud, including working with Amazon on EC2.

and most tellingly

Teradata has achieved a 300%ish speed-up in geospatial processing. I gather this is largely a byproduct of the parallel analytics work Teradata did around strengthening its SAS integration. However, there don’t seem to be a lot of Teradata geospatial users yet.

Curt Monash’s blog is a must read for any one interested in Business Intelligence careers. DBMS2 is a blog with all the inside info from a variety of industry sources since Dr Monash has been here since 1981 and probably was a Business Intelligence expert  even beofre they came up with term “business analytics’ or “business intelligence”. You can contact/ follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/CurtMonash and http://www.dbms2.com/

Other example of Database companies using Social Media are at

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Aster-Data-Systems/5601042375

and

http://www.facebook.com/pages/OracleCRM/96039541606

and

http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=11383832330

I also liked updates from the SPSS and the SAS pages-

http://www.facebook.com/pages/SPSS/54648805831

and

http://www.facebook.com/SASPublishing

( Note only the people at SAS Publishing have managed to use the new custom domain name feature by Facebook)

This is again something that strikes me again and again-

People great at writing code in very technical things like Linux or even Super Computing find it difficult to study and make improvements in their Twitter , Blog or Facebook pages. Even though the technical effort and time taken to learn them is less than 5 % of the time taken to learn new technologies AND more importantly the incremental benefit from using more Video Presentations, a better looking Blog or  more active Tweeting is SIGNIFICANT in terms of MARKETING ROI.

Social Media Value for a growing technology company/ authors/ open source communities =

Incremental Publicity from FB , Twitter, Blog DIVIDED by Incremental cost of Twitter, Facebook, Blogging ( say 4 hours a week cumulative)

The maths says that Social Media makes sense in terms of return on time taken to publicize your book, your writing or your technology. AND it’s mostly cheaper than other marketing sources.

Good Software sometimes makes way for Average Software WITH Creative Marketing.

The World of Data as I think

Post discussions on my performance at grad school and WHAT exactly DO I want to work in- I drew the following curves.

Feel free to draw better circles- and I will include your reference here

Caution- Based upon a very ordinary understanding of extra ordinary technical things.

THE WORLD OF DATA

Screenshot-18

AND WHAT I WANT TO DO IN IT

Screenshot-19

ps- What do you think? Add a comment

“Build a better mousetrap, and the world will beat a path to your door.”- Emerson

Biz Stone finally talks business

Twitter co-founder, and creator of Blogger Mr Biz Stone finally set out a short brief email ( or twemail) on the changes in Twitter’s terms of service.The very concise email is below and an excellent interview with the man is at http://therumpus.net/2009/04/the-rumpus-interview-with-twitter-co-founder-biz-stone/

Incidentally Biz Stone’s inventions are kind of revolutionary in social media – he also founded Blogger ( blogging and micro blogging have done more to confound LarryRank algorithm at Google Search than anyone else).

What does an analytic, data whining blog have to do with social media. Plenty. If you have ever designed a propensity scoring model for targeting customers based on their behavior , more clean data that is identifiable an individual level is always a boon. The current trend for sentiment analysis is simply addition of text keywords ( or categorical variables if you insist) to the existing customer database.

Can adding keywords from blogs, tweets, web searches, TO existing data about you (credit bureau, demographic, purchase behavior)- can this lead to a better lift in the models. Yes.

Will this lead to more privacy debates. Yes. Given the huge volume of text variables, as well as the huge number of potential customers- privacy debates are quite statistically irrational ( but we digress into economics here).

No one is interested in selling just 1 more product. They use people (nicknamed Numerati) for writing queries to append, manipulate data so as to AGGREGATE and then build a model. Only after the models are built are the scores disaggregated AND scored individually- usually in automated manner.

No company is interested in selling to one consumer so they dont stoop at a privacy invasive search of individuals.

Advertsing is not an evil way of making money, Mr Stone. Just Trust Google and the guys who could not complete their Phd because they WERE making money.

What if all maths grads did that- ..and that’s an interesting thought.

Hi,

We’d like to let you know about our new Terms of Service. As Twitter
has evolved, we’ve gained a better understanding of how folks use the
service. As a result, we’ve updated the Terms and we’re notifying
account holders.

We’ve posted a brief overview on our company blog and you can read the
Terms of Service online. If you haven’t been by in a while, we invite
you to visit Twitter to see what else is new.

Overview: http://blog.twitter.com
Terms: http://www.twitter.com/tos
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com

These updates complement the spirit of Twitter. If the nature of our
service changes, we’ll revisit the Terms as necessary. Comments are
welcome, please find the “feedback” link on the Terms of Service page.

Thanks,
Biz Stone, Co-founder
Twitter, Inc.


Interview Alison Bolen SAS.com

My biggest editing soapbox right now is to encourage brevity. We’re so used to writing white papers, brochures and magazine articles that the concept of throwing down 200 words on a topic from your day is a very foreign exercise. –

 

Alison Bolen  Editor-in-Chief sascom

Here is an interview with Alison Bolen the editor-in-chief of SAScom , online magazaine of the SAS Institute. Alison talks of the challenges in maintaining several of the topmost expertise blogs on SAS ,Business Analytics and Business Intelligence.

Ajay- Describe your career in the technology writing and publishing area. What advice would you give to young Web publishers and content producers just entering the job market in this recession? Describe your journey within SAS.

Alison- I started at SAS in 1999 as a summer student working as a contributing editor for SAS Communications magazine. Before the end of the year, I came on full time and soon transitioned to writing and editing for the Web. At that time, we were just developing the strategy for the customer support site and e-newsletters. As the first editor for the SAS Tech Report, I led marketing efforts that brought in 15,000 opt-in subscribers within six months. A year later, I switched to writing and editing customer success stories, which I enjoyed doing until I took on the role of Editor-in-Chief for sascom® magazine in 2006. We started our blogging program in 2007, and I’ve been actively involved in coaching SAS bloggers for the past two years.

Outside of SAS, I’ve written for Southwest Hydrology Magazine, the Arizona Daily Star and other regional papers. My bachelor’s degree is in magazine journalism and my master’s degree is in technical and business communications.

If you’re just beginning your career as a writer, start a blog and stick with it. There’s no better way to get daily writing practice, learn the basics of search engine optimization and start to understand what works online.

Ajay www.SAS.com/Blogs has many, many blogs by experts, RSS feeds and even covers the annual SAS conference with video content. In terms of social media adaptation, what prompts you to stay ahead of the competition in ensuring marketing and technical communications for brand awareness?

What do you think are the basics of setting up a social media presence for a company, regardless of size?

Alison- Social media excites me because you can cut through the clutter and be real. Our new business forecasting blog by Michael Gilliland is a good example. Teaching people how to forecast better is his top priority, not selling software. Our overarching goal for the blogging program is similar: to share and develop expertise.

We’re big advocates of aligning your social media presence with existing marketing goals. We have a few grass-roots teams interested in social media, and we have a director-level Marketing 2.0 Council that our Social Media Manager Dave Thomas leads to determine broad guidelines and strategies. But the overarching concept is to look at the goals of your individual marketing campaigns first, and then determine which social media channels might help you reach those goals.

Most of all, take off your marketing hat when you enter the blog, network or forum. Social media consists of individuals, for the most part, and not companies, so be sure to offer value as a colleague and build relationships.

Ajay- I noticed that SAS.com/ Blogs are almost ad free – even of SAS products – apart from a simple banner of the company. Was this a deliberate decision, and if so, why?

Alison- Yes, most of the SAS blogs were intentionally created to help establish the individual blogger’s expertise – not to promote SAS products or services. One positive side effect is that SAS – by extension – builds credibility as well. But we really do see the blogs as a place to discuss concepts and ideas more than products and tools.

Ajay- What distinguishes good writers on blogs from bad writers on blogs? How about some tips for technical blog writing and especially editing (since many writers need editors more than they realize)?

Alison- The best blog writers know how to simplify and explain even the most mundane, everyday processes. This is true of personal and technical blog writing. If you can look at your life or your work and see what piece of it others would find interesting or want to know more about – and then know how to describe that sliver of yourself clearly – you have what it takes to be a good blogger. Chris Hemedinger does this well on The SAS Dummy blog.

My biggest editing soapbox right now is to encourage brevity. We’re so used to writing white papers, brochures and magazine articles at SAS that the concept of throwing down 200 words on a random topic from your day is a very foreign exercise. You have to learn how to edit your day – not just your writing – to find those topics and distill those thoughts into quick snippets that keep readers interested. And don’t forget it’s okay to have fun!

Ajay- I balance one blog, small consulting assignments and being a stay-at-home dad for an 18-month old. How easy is it for you to balance being editor of sascom, given the huge content your sites create, and three kids? Does working for SAS and its employee-friendly reputation help you do so?

Alison- I couldn’t balance work and kids without a whole lot of help from friends and family, that’s for sure. And the employee-friendly benefits help too. The biggest benefit is the cultural mindset, though, not any individual policy. My boss and my boss’ boss are both working mothers, and they’re balancing the same types of schedules. There’s an understanding about finding a healthy work-life balance that permeates SAS from top to bottom.

Ajay- As a social media consultant it is a weekly struggle for me to convince companies to discontinue registration for normal content (but keep it for special events), use a lot more video tutorials and share content freely across the Web. Above all, convincing busy senior managers to start writing a blog or an article is an exercise in diplomacy itself. How do you convince senior managers to devote time to content creation?

Alison- In a lot of areas, the content is already being created for analyst presentations, press interviews and consulting briefs. It’s really a matter of understanding how to take those existing materials and re-present them in a more personal voice. Not everyone can – or should – do it. You have to decide if you have the voice for it and whether or not it will bring you value beyond what you’re getting through your existing channels.

Ajay- Any plans to visit India and have a SAS India blogathon?

Alison- Alas, not this year.

Maybe I will visit Cary,NC then 🙂


Bio:
Alison Bolen is the Editor of sascom magazine and the sascom voices blog, where SAS experts publish their thoughts on popular and emerging business and technology trends worldwide. Since starting at SAS in 1999, Alison has edited print publications, Web sites, e-newsletters, customer success stories and blogs.

Alison holds a bachelor’s degree in magazine journalism from Ohio University and a master’s degree in technical writing from North Carolina State University.

1) Describe your career in the technology writing and publishing area. What advice would you give to young Web publishers and content producers just entering the job market in this recession? Describe your journey within SAS.

I started at SAS in 1999 as a summer student working as a contributing editor for SAS Communications magazine. Before the end of the year, I came on full time and soon transitioned to writing and editing for the Web. At that time, we were just developing the strategy for the customer support site and e-newsletters. As the first editor for the SAS Tech Report, I led marketing efforts that brought in 15,000 opt-in subscribers within six months. A year later, I switched to writing and editing customer success stories, which I enjoyed doing until I took on the role of Editor-in-Chief for sascom® magazine in 2006. We started our blogging program in 2007, and I’ve been actively involved in coaching SAS bloggers for the past two years.

Outside of SAS, I’ve written for Southwest Hydrology Magazine, the Arizona Daily Star and other regional papers. My bachelor’s degree is in magazine journalism and my master’s degree is in technical and business communications.

If you’re just beginning your career as a writer, start a blog and stick with it. There’s no better way to get daily writing practice, learn the basics of search engine optimization and start to understand what works online.
2) SAS.com/Blogs has many, many blogs by experts, RSS feeds and even covers the annual SAS conference with video content. In terms of social media adaptation, what prompts you to stay ahead of the competition in ensuring marketing and technical communications for brand awareness?

What do you think are the basics of setting up a social media presence for a company, regardless of size?

Social media excites me because you can cut through the clutter and be real. Our new business forecasting blog by Michael Gilliland is a good example. Teaching people how to forecast better is his top priority, not selling software. Our overarching goal for the blogging program is similar: to share and develop expertise.

We’re big advocates of aligning your social media presence with existing marketing goals. We have a few grass-roots teams interested in social media, and we have a director-level Marketing 2.0 Council that our Social Media Manager Dave Thomas leads to determine broad guidelines and strategies. But the overarching concept is to look at the goals of your individual marketing campaigns first, and then determine which social media channels might help you reach those goals.

Most of all, take off your marketing hat when you enter the blog, network or forum. Social media consists of individuals, for the most part, and not companies, so be sure to offer value as a colleague and build relationships.


3) I noticed that SAS.com/ Blogs are almost ad free – even of SAS products – apart from a simple banner of the company. Was this a deliberate decision, and if so, why?

Yes, most of the SAS blogs were intentionally created to help establish the individual blogger’s expertise – not to promote SAS products or services. One positive side effect is that SAS – by extension – builds credibility as well. But we really do see the blogs as a place to discuss concepts and ideas more than products and tools.
4) What distinguishes good writers on blogs from bad writers on blogs? How about some tips for technical blog writing and especially editing (since many writers need editors more than they realize)?

The best blog writers know how to simplify and explain even the most mundane, everyday processes. This is true of personal and technical blog writing. If you can look at your life or your work and see what piece of it others would find interesting or want to know more about – and then know how to describe that sliver of yourself clearly – you have what it takes to be a good blogger. Chris Hemedinger does this well on The SAS Dummy blog.

My biggest editing soapbox right now is to encourage brevity. We’re so used to writing white papers, brochures and magazine articles at SAS that the concept of throwing down 200 words on a random topic from your day is a very foreign exercise. You have to learn how to edit your day – not just your writing – to find those topics and distill those thoughts into quick snippets that keep readers interested. And don’t forget it’s okay to have fun!
5) I balance one blog, small consulting assignments and being a stay-at-home dad for an 18-month old. How easy is it for you to balance being editor of sascom, given the huge content your sites create, and three kids? Does working for SAS and its employee-friendly reputation help you do so?

I couldn’t balance work and kids without a whole lot of help from friends and family, that’s for sure. And the employee-friendly benefits help too. The biggest benefit is the cultural mindset, though, not any individual policy. My boss and my boss’ boss are both working mothers, and they’re balancing the same types of schedules. There’s an understanding about finding a healthy work-life balance that permeates SAS from top to bottom.

6) As a social media consultant it is a weekly struggle for me to convince companies to discontinue registration for normal content (but keep it for special events), use a lot more video tutorials and share content freely across the Web. Above all, convincing busy senior managers to start writing a blog or an article is an exercise in diplomacy itself. How do you convince senior managers to devote time to content creation?

In a lot of areas, the content is already being created for analyst presentations, press interviews and consulting briefs. It’s really a matter of understanding how to take those existing materials and re-present them in a more personal voice. Not everyone can – or should – do it. You have to decide if you have the voice for it and whether or not it will bring you value beyond what you’re getting through your existing channels.

7) Any plans to visit India and have a SAS India blogathon?

Alas, not this year.

How NOT to ask Questions/ Comments

I got this great website from Joshua Reich of i2pi

Basically it tells newbies on how to get better effective help online while learning new tech stuff, by lucidly explaining basic community volunteer behaviour.

Citation:http://catb.org/~esr/faqs/smart-questions.html

Rodin_TheThinker

hackers have a reputation for meeting simple questions with what looks like hostility or arrogance. It sometimes looks like we’re reflexively rude to newbies and the ignorant. But this isn’t really true.What we are, unapologetically, is hostile to people who seem to be unwilling to think or to do their own homework before asking questions. People like that are time sinks — they take without giving back, and they waste time we could have spent on another question more interesting and another person more worthy of an answer. We call people like this “losers” (and for historical reasons we sometimes spell it “lusers”).

We realize that there are many people who just want to use the software we write, and who have no interest in learning technical details. For most people, a computer is merely a tool, a means to an end; they have more important things to do and lives to live. We acknowledge that, and don’t expect everyone to take an interest in the technical matters that fascinate us. Nevertheless, our style of answering questions is tuned for people who do take such an interest and are willing to be active participants in problem-solving. That’s not going to change. Nor should it; if it did, we would become less effective at the things we do best.

We’re (largely) volunteers. We take time out of busy lives to answer questions, and at times we’re overwhelmed with them. So we filter ruthlessly. In particular, we throw away questions from people who appear to be losers in order to spend our question-answering time more efficiently, on winners.

Kind of explains why Bloggers delete some comments on  blogs as well 😉

Image Source: wikimedia.org