Apache Spark is the Smartphone of Big Data

Similar to the way the smartphone changed the way we communicate – far beyond its original goal of mobile voice telephony – Apache Spark is revolutionizing Big Data. While portability may have been the catalyst of the mobile revolution, it was the ability to have one device perform multiple tasks very well with the ability to easily build and use a diverse range of applications that are the keys to its ubiquity. Ultimately, with the smartphone we have a general platform that has changed the way we communicate, socialize, work, and play. The smartphone has not only replaced older technologies…

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Interested in career in Data Sciences? Read Freakonomics first!

Over the last few years, a common question I’ve been asked is what does it take to become a data scientist?  Often my answers surrounded the technology – i.e. learn Spark, Python, and/or R; take courses in Data Sciences; play with data sets; etc.   Yet, I was never fully satisfied with that answer because I had always felt that the heart of Data Sciences (and Big Data in more generic terms) is the data – or more specifically, the ability to understand the data. Recently, I re-read “Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything” and it dawned…

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Lazy Geek Hack: Mismatch of Ubuntu and Microsoft Keyboards

Lt. Felix Gaeta: Sir, I’m running every diagnostic we’ve got. Checking each line of code could take days. Col. Saul Tigh: I am not interested in excuses. Fix it. Lt. Felix Gaeta: [shouting] It’s not an excuse, sir. It’s a fracking fact! — Though I may be a walking Apple advertisement, I am still a fanboy of Microsoft products (yeah, I know that some times this isn’t all that obvious).  Today’s lazy geek hack is in reference to the awesomely comfortable and ergonomic Microsoft keyboards and Ubuntu OS.  Today’s keyboard of choice is the Microsoft Sculpt Comfort keyboard though this…

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Farewell Microsoft … Sometimes, you gotta roll the hard six!

With a heavy heart and mixed emotions, after 9.5 years calling Microsoft my home, I have decided to move on from Microsoft with this coming Friday (10/4/2013) being my last day.  It was a hard choice to make as the bulk of my career has been working closely with SQL Server and Analysis Services – and having Microsoft campus as my second home.  Alas, the calls for experimentation and disruption are ringing loudly in my ears (or perhaps my headphones are on too tight?)  The quote “Sometimes you gotta roll the hard six” is in reference to Battlestar Galactica (2004)…

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In the context of quantum entanglement and time travel – Stargate may be more correct than Star Trek

Feature Image: Michael Bolognesi’s Diamonds in the Sky As a follow up to In the context of quantum entanglement and teleportation – Stargate may be more correct than Star Trek, I’m diving into one of SciFi’s persistent quandaries – time travel.  And before anyone gets started, I am a proud Trekkie so this is not meant as a knock on Star Trek.  In fact, I’ve already purchased my tickets for Star Trek Into Darkness and as fan of BBC’s Sherlock, I have to admit I’m sort of rooting for the villain this time around!   Image source: Benedict Cumberbatch – Star…

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In the context of quantum entanglement and teleportation – Stargate may be more correct than Star Trek

While waiting in line at Salumi (Italian so good, there are regularly hour long lines in front of the store), i was watching Nova’s Fabric of the Cosmos: Quantum Leap.  In the process, I just realized that w/ the concept of teleportation – Stargate is more correct than Star Trek! Please note, I am at best a kindergarten novice quantum physicist – I just read a bunch of quantum physics books and watch PBS and Discovery when I’m not watching SciFi The basic fundamentals here of quantum entanglement are best left to Brian Greene in the The Fabric of the…

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