How to Win a Hackathon

This year I competed in three hackathons, finishing 2nd, 1st and 1st.  Reflecting back on those events, I walked away with several non-technical lessons learned to make a team successful.  Here are my battle-tested tips for winning a hackathon. Before the event: Marry up:  If you're really serious about winning, you'll do what I did and marry a technically […]

Analytics Lifecycle

Working in an ad hoc analytics environment is inherently random.  You never know what question you'll tackle, what data you'll need, or what quantitative method you need to apply.  In order to successfully deliver an end to end analysis, I like to think about the analysis process through the following lens. SME:  Building a solid subject […]

Adopting Agile Methods for Your Analytics Team

An article on the benefits using the Agile programming paradigm in an ad-hoc data analytics environments, targeted towards the person responsible for shifting the culture, the analytics team manager.   Dear Analytics Team Managers, The agile paradigm for software development has been a huge success.   It is a great fit when the team has […]

Setting up a Cassandra with IPython on AWS

How to get up and running with a 3-node, single-server instance of Cassandra with IPython on a cloud server. This article focuses on installing and configuring the following: Cassandra on AWS EC2 via the DataStax ami Python and IPython Notebook web IDE Step 1:  Cassandra You have two options for installing Cassandra.  Either install the open […]

Getting Started with R

I am often asked how to get started with R. With any new language the learning curve can be tough, and it's hard to know where to start. Here is the advice that I give people. Installing R and RStudio You have a choice when it comes to installing R. You can go with the […]