Welcome!

SDN Journal Authors: Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz, Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, TJ Randall

Related Topics: @DXWorldExpo, Artificial Intelligence, @CloudExpo, @ThingsExpo

@DXWorldExpo: Blog Feed Post

Demystifying #DataScience | @CloudExpo #BigData #AI #ArtificialIntelligence

Data science is about identifying those variables and metrics that might be better predictors of performance

[Opening Scene]: Billy Dean is pacing the office. He’s struggling to keep his delivery trucks at full capacity and on the road. Random breakdowns, unexpected employee absences, and unscheduled truck maintenance are impacting bookings, revenues and ultimately customer satisfaction. He keeps hearing from his business customers how they are leveraging data science to improve their business operations. Billy Dean starts to wonder if data science can help him. As he contemplates what data science can do for him, he slowly drifts off to sleep, and visions of Data Science starts dancing in his head…

[Poof! Suddenly Wizard Wei appears]: Hi, I’m your data science wizard to help alleviate your data science concerns. I don’t understand why folks try to make the data science discussion complicated. Let’s start simple with a simple definition of data science:

Data science is about identifying those variables and metrics that might be better predictors of performance

The key to a successful analytical model is having a robust set of variables against which to test for their predictive capabilities. And the key to having a robust set of variables from which to test is to get the business users engaged early in the process.

[A confused Billy Dean]: Okay, but I’m still confused. I mean, how does this really apply to my business?

[A patient Wizard Wei]: Well, let’s say that you are trying to predict which of your routes are likely to have under-capacity loads so that you can combine loads. In order to identify those variables that might be better predictors of under-capacity routes, you might ask your business users:

What data might you want to have in order to predict under-capacity routes?

The business users are likely to come up with a wide variety of variables, including:

Customer name Ship to location Customer industry
Building permits Customer tenure Change in customer size
Customer stock price Customer D&B rating Types of products hauled
Time of year Seasonality/Holidays Day of week
Traffic Weather Local Events
Distance from distribution center Open headcount on Indeed.com Tenure of logistics manager

The Data Science team will then gather these variables, perform some data transformations and enrichment, and then look for variables and combinations of variables that yield the best predictive results regarding under-capacity routes (see Figure 1).

Figure 1: Data Science Process

Role of Artificial Intelligence
[A less confuse Billy Dean]:
Ah, I think I understand, but what about all this talk about artificial intelligence? From some of these commercials on TV, it appears that robots with artificial intelligence will be ruling the world. Can you say Skynet?

[A still patient Wizard Wei]: Ah, that’s just marketing. Artificial intelligence is just one of many different tools in the predictive analytics kit bag of a data scientist. But artificial intelligence – while embracing some very sophisticated mathematical, data enrichment and computing techniques – is really pretty straightforward. All artificial intelligence is trying to do is to find and quantify relationships between variables buried in large data sets (see Figure 2).

Figure 2: Understanding Artificial Intelligence

[An inquisitive Billy Dean]: Okay, I’m starting to get it, but there seems to be some many
different analytic and predictive algorithms from which to choose. How does the business user know where to start?

[A growing frustrated Wizard Wei]: Ah, that’s the secret to the process. Business users don’t need to know which algorithms to use; they need to be able to identify those variables that might be better predictors of performance. It is up to the data science team to determine which variables are the most appropriate by testing the different algorithms.

Data Mining, Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence (including areas such as cognitive computing, statistics, neural networks, text analytics, video analytics, etc.) are all members of the broader category of data science tools. Our data scientist team has experts in each of these areas, though no one data scientist is an expert at all of them (in spite of what they tell me). The different data science tools are used in different scenarios for different needs. Think of one of your mechanics. They have a large toolbox full of different tools. They determine what tools to use to fix a truck based upon the problem they are trying to solve. That’s exactly what a data scientist is doing, just with a different toolbox of algorithms.

No single algorithm is best over whole domain; so different algorithms are needed to cover different domains. Often combinations of algorithms are used in order to achieve the best results. To be honest, it’s like a giant jigsaw puzzle with the data science team constantly testing different combinations of metrics, data enrichment and algorithms until they find the combination that yields the best results.

[An enlightened Billy Dean]: I think I’ve finally got it. All of these different algorithms and techniques are just trying to help predict what is likely to happen so that I can make better operational and customer issues. But what’s the realm of what’s possible with data and analytics; I mean, how effective can my organization become at leveraging data and analytics to power my business?

[A proud Wizard Wei]: Great question, and the heart of the big data and data science conversation. Figure 3 shows how you could use these different data science tools to progress up the Big Data Business Model Maturity Index; to transition from running your business on Descriptive analytics that tell you what happened (Monitoring stage) to Predictive analytics that tell you what is likely to happen (Insights stage) to Prescriptive analytics that tell you what they should do (Optimization stage).

Figure 3: Leveraging Artificial Intelligence to drive Business Value

In the end, the data and the analytics are only useful if they help you optimize key operational processes, reduce compliance and security risks, uncover new revenue opportunities and create a more compelling, more prescriptive customer engagement. In the end, data and analytics are all about your business.

[A satisfied Billy Dean]: That’s great Wizard Wei! Thanks for your help!

Now, what can you do about my taxes…

To learn more about “Demystifying Data Science”, come to my Dell EMC World session: “Demystifying Data Science: A Pragmatic Guide To Building Big Data Use Cases” See you there!!

The post Demystifying Data Science appeared first on InFocus Blog | Dell EMC Services.

More Stories By William Schmarzo

Bill Schmarzo, author of “Big Data: Understanding How Data Powers Big Business” and “Big Data MBA: Driving Business Strategies with Data Science”, is responsible for setting strategy and defining the Big Data service offerings for Dell EMC’s Big Data Practice.

As a CTO within Dell EMC’s 2,000+ person consulting organization, he works with organizations to identify where and how to start their big data journeys. He’s written white papers, is an avid blogger and is a frequent speaker on the use of Big Data and data science to power an organization’s key business initiatives. He is a University of San Francisco School of Management (SOM) Executive Fellow where he teaches the “Big Data MBA” course. Bill also just completed a research paper on “Determining The Economic Value of Data”. Onalytica recently ranked Bill as #4 Big Data Influencer worldwide.

Bill has over three decades of experience in data warehousing, BI and analytics. Bill authored the Vision Workshop methodology that links an organization’s strategic business initiatives with their supporting data and analytic requirements. Bill serves on the City of San Jose’s Technology Innovation Board, and on the faculties of The Data Warehouse Institute and Strata.

Previously, Bill was vice president of Analytics at Yahoo where he was responsible for the development of Yahoo’s Advertiser and Website analytics products, including the delivery of “actionable insights” through a holistic user experience. Before that, Bill oversaw the Analytic Applications business unit at Business Objects, including the development, marketing and sales of their industry-defining analytic applications.

Bill holds a Masters Business Administration from University of Iowa and a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics, Computer Science and Business Administration from Coe College.

@CloudExpo Stories
Founded in 2000, Chetu Inc. is a global provider of customized software development solutions and IT staff augmentation services for software technology providers. By providing clients with unparalleled niche technology expertise and industry experience, Chetu has become the premiere long-term, back-end software development partner for start-ups, SMBs, and Fortune 500 companies. Chetu is headquartered in Plantation, Florida, with thirteen offices throughout the U.S. and abroad.
Dion Hinchcliffe is an internationally recognized digital expert, bestselling book author, frequent keynote speaker, analyst, futurist, and transformation expert based in Washington, DC. He is currently Chief Strategy Officer at the industry-leading digital strategy and online community solutions firm, 7Summits.
Bill Schmarzo, author of "Big Data: Understanding How Data Powers Big Business" and "Big Data MBA: Driving Business Strategies with Data Science," is responsible for setting the strategy and defining the Big Data service offerings and capabilities for EMC Global Services Big Data Practice. As the CTO for the Big Data Practice, he is responsible for working with organizations to help them identify where and how to start their big data journeys. He's written several white papers, is an avid blogge...
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that All in Mobile, a mobile app development company from Poland, will exhibit at the 22nd International CloudEXPO | DXWorldEXPO. All In Mobile is a mobile app development company from Poland. Since 2014, they maintain passion for developing mobile applications for enterprises and startups worldwide.
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that Dez Blanchfield joined the faculty of CloudEXPO's "10-Year Anniversary Event" which will take place on November 11-13, 2018 in New York City. Dez is a strategic leader in business and digital transformation with 25 years of experience in the IT and telecommunications industries developing strategies and implementing business initiatives. He has a breadth of expertise spanning technologies such as cloud computing, big data and analytics, cognitive computing, m...
In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, James Henry, Co-CEO/CTO of Calgary Scientific Inc., introduced you to the challenges, solutions and benefits of training AI systems to solve visual problems with an emphasis on improving AIs with continuous training in the field. He explored applications in several industries and discussed technologies that allow the deployment of advanced visualization solutions to the cloud.
We all know that end users experience the Internet primarily with mobile devices. From an app development perspective, we know that successfully responding to the needs of mobile customers depends on rapid DevOps – failing fast, in short, until the right solution evolves in your customers' relationship to your business. Whether you’re decomposing an SOA monolith, or developing a new application cloud natively, it’s not a question of using microservices – not doing so will be a path to eventual b...
I think DevOps is now a rambunctious teenager - it's starting to get a mind of its own, wanting to get its own things but it still needs some adult supervision," explained Thomas Hooker, VP of marketing at CollabNet, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Enterprises are moving to the cloud faster than most of us in security expected. CIOs are going from 0 to 100 in cloud adoption and leaving security teams in the dust. Once cloud is part of an enterprise stack, it’s unclear who has responsibility for the protection of applications, services, and data. When cloud breaches occur, whether active compromise or a publicly accessible database, the blame must fall on both service providers and users. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Ben Johnson, C...
In this presentation, you will learn first hand what works and what doesn't while architecting and deploying OpenStack. Some of the topics will include:- best practices for creating repeatable deployments of OpenStack- multi-site considerations- how to customize OpenStack to integrate with your existing systems and security best practices.
"MobiDev is a software development company and we do complex, custom software development for everybody from entrepreneurs to large enterprises," explained Alan Winters, U.S. Head of Business Development at MobiDev, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Agile has finally jumped the technology shark, expanding outside the software world. Enterprises are now increasingly adopting Agile practices across their organizations in order to successfully navigate the disruptive waters that threaten to drown them. In our quest for establishing change as a core competency in our organizations, this business-centric notion of Agile is an essential component of Agile Digital Transformation. In the years since the publication of the Agile Manifesto, the conn...
"We work around really protecting the confidentiality of information, and by doing so we've developed implementations of encryption through a patented process that is known as superencipherment," explained Richard Blech, CEO of Secure Channels Inc., in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Major trends and emerging technologies – from virtual reality and IoT, to Big Data and algorithms – are helping organizations innovate in the digital era. However, to create real business value, IT must think beyond the ‘what’ of digital transformation to the ‘how’ to harness emerging trends, innovation and disruption. Architecture is the key that underpins and ties all these efforts together. In the digital age, it’s important to invest in architecture, extend the enterprise footprint to the cl...
Leading companies, from the Global Fortune 500 to the smallest companies, are adopting hybrid cloud as the path to business advantage. Hybrid cloud depends on cloud services and on-premises infrastructure working in unison. Successful implementations require new levels of data mobility, enabled by an automated and seamless flow across on-premises and cloud resources. In his general session at 21st Cloud Expo, Greg Tevis, an IBM Storage Software Technical Strategist and Customer Solution Architec...
Data is the fuel that drives the machine learning algorithmic engines and ultimately provides the business value. In his session at Cloud Expo, Ed Featherston, a director and senior enterprise architect at Collaborative Consulting, discussed the key considerations around quality, volume, timeliness, and pedigree that must be dealt with in order to properly fuel that engine.
"We were founded in 2003 and the way we were founded was about good backup and good disaster recovery for our clients, and for the last 20 years we've been pretty consistent with that," noted Marc Malafronte, Territory Manager at StorageCraft, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Effectively SMBs and government programs must address compounded regulatory compliance requirements. The most recent are Controlled Unclassified Information and the EU's GDPR have Board Level implications. Managing sensitive data protection will likely result in acquisition criteria, demonstration requests and new requirements. Developers, as part of the pre-planning process and the associated supply chain, could benefit from updating their code libraries and design by incorporating changes. In...
Andi Mann, Chief Technology Advocate at Splunk, is an accomplished digital business executive with extensive global expertise as a strategist, technologist, innovator, marketer, and communicator. For over 30 years across five continents, he has built success with Fortune 500 corporations, vendors, governments, and as a leading research analyst and consultant.
No hype cycles or predictions of zillions of things here. IoT is big. You get it. You know your business and have great ideas for a business transformation strategy. What comes next? Time to make it happen. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jay Mason, Associate Partner at M&S Consulting, presented a step-by-step plan to develop your technology implementation strategy. He discussed the evaluation of communication standards and IoT messaging protocols, data analytics considerations, edge-to-cloud tec...
Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more business becomes digital the more stakeholders are interested in this data including how it relates to business. Some of these people have never used a monitoring tool before. They have a question on their mind like “How is my application doing” but no id...