The universe is still preparing me for Strata+Hadoop World in San Jose next week.

Channel hopping on TV last night I chanced upon a programme about hoarders and another about pigmy minke whales from the grandfather of wildlife documentaries, David Attenborough.

In “Hoarding, buried alive!”, I listened to a woman speak about her fetish for collecting eagles, the apparent gateway drug that led to her decline into the obsessive junk collecting state. When her house became unsanitary due to the clutter, embellished by the pre-requisite rats & mice, she started to cluster new found items in her boy friend’s house two blocks away. Her loved ones were staging an intervention to prevent the council from evicting her from her house due to its derelict and unsanitary condition.

While cringing at the situation I had an anxious thought that this hoarding tendency could also become rife within Big Data systems my team are building for our clients. With seemingly limitless storage and the ability to ingest high volume, variety and velocity of well formed data and junk data, organisations run the risk of turning into data hoarders!

So what? Storage is cheap, Big Data is well, big, and public clouds let you shift your clutter to their data centres and out of site & mind (except for that monthly bill). Then, why are alarm bells going off in my head about this possible data hoarding tendency? Ask yourself that question in front of the man (or woman) in the mirror - you know the right answer. Here it comes -> Hoarding is bad, no matter how much space is available. With more space we now have to be even more disciplined to be honest with ourselves about the value of the data that we are storing – and to discard it once it’s served its purpose.

I’m dead keen to see what the other conference goers have to say about data hoarding next week. How about you?

When the Hoarders programme cut to a scene of decomposing food I flicked over to David Attenborough’s recount of tracking minke whales.

Toward the end of the documentary, David featured a researcher who was tagging the normally solitary dwarf minke whales which congregate in great pods once a year on the Great Barrier Reef. The researchers were tagging well over a hundred whales with GPS trackers and plotting their migratory paths over 6 months. This was a pretty uplifting and amazing story that supports the ever evolving IoT and Big Data solutions that enable scientists to drive insights from disparate and low information dense data like the single transmission of a GPS tracking device fixed to the dorsal fin of the dwarf minke whale. Here’s a look at what the whales get up to then they migrate.

Preventing data hoarding and use cases for the Internet of Things (IoT) are two of the topics that I’m going to attend to at the conference. I’ve selected the presentations that peak my interest and listed them below. As before, be sure to make comments on this post if the topics resonate with you, or, comment on other topics that you’d like our NZ contingent to attend next week. I welcome your input.

Strata+Hadoop World Topics

Data driven business

  • How to hook up your event data for behavioral insights
  • Using commerce data to fuel innovation
  • Developing a big data business strategy
  • Data science for good means designing for people: Part 1
  • Empowering business users to lead with data
  • eBay analysts and governed self-service analysis: Delivering “turn-by-turn” smart suggestions
  • How GE created a pervasive culture of data-driven insights at scale
  • Where’s the puck headed?
  • An introduction to Transamerica's product recommendation platform
  • Automating decision making with big data: How to make it work
  • Making big data ready for business now
  • Turn big data into big results


  • The Internet of Things: How to do it. Seriously!
  • How Siemens handles complexity in streaming data from millions of sensors
  • How big data is helping to save babies around the world
  • How the oil and gas industry is igniting a spark with information fusion and metadata analytics

Data Governance & Enterprise Adoption

  • Wrangling, metadata, and governance: Supervision vs. adoption
  • How to build a successful data lake
  • Grounding big data: A meta-imperative
  • Tame that beast: How to bring operations, governance, and reliability to Hadoop
  • Big data ethics and a future for privacy
  • Governance for custom Hadoop applications via the enterprise (meta)data hub
  • 10 concepts the enterprise decision maker needs to understand about Hadoop
  • Building a modern data architecture
  • Old industries, sexy data: How machine learning is reshaping the world's backbone industries
  • Filling the data lake
  • Best practices for enterprise adoption of big data in the cloud
  • Building a scalable, secure data platform: If I knew then what I know now

Case Studies for Data Driven Business

  • Successful enterprise data hub design patterns at BTHow TD Bank is using Hadoop to create IT 3.0 and launch the next-generation bank
  • Subject-matter experts and access to rich data: A case study in protecting a network from the Brobot distributed denial of service attacks.
  • How we Hadoop: Inmar’s transformation from a business-services outsourcing company to a data-driven enterprise
  • Netflix: Making big data small
  • Big data for telcos: A trio of use cases
  • Inside Cigna's big data journey
  • Data applications and infrastructure at Coursera
  • Delivering "DARPA hard"
  • Publicly broadcasting data exhaust at a public broadcaster
  • Analyzing drivers of Net Promoter Score and their impact on customer engagement in the OTA industry
  • Transforming Telefónica

Here is my detailed schedule (double bookings abound)

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Devin Deen

As Director, Data & Analytics at enterprise IT, Devin ensures customers get to navigate, much more easily, the complexities of implementing data warehouse, data management, business intelligence and business analytic tools and solutions. Outside of e-IT he is active in the NZ tech-startup community and directly involved with successful SaaS company,

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