2016-09-23

The Little Data Science Checklist


English: Random data points and their linear r...There are lots of sources online and in book stores that will teach a person how to do Machine Learning, Regression, Text analysis, or any other fascinating topic related to Data Science.

But is that all there is?

Just know apply an algorithm, and you improve the bottom line of your company?

What if you need to justify a project? How do you demonstrate that there is a process that can be followed for data science?

Recently with some colleagues we were discussing this precise topic.

Here is the answer that we came up with:



Question:

            What is the question?

            Who asked the question?

            When do they want it?

            How does it provide business value?

Hypothesis:

            Validation Criteria

            Identify the data

            Collect the data

            Transform, Merge, Munge

            Analyze and explore

            Iterate

            Peer Review

            Visualize and Communicate

            Generate new directions.

            Produce Finding

Finding:

            TRUE

            FALSE

            Inconclusive

            Experiment Required

Supporting Data:

            Raw Data

            Chart
            Visualization

I will pick a section and write more about each of these sections, but this little checklist is a beginning step in applying a Data Science process for an Enterprise. 

2016-09-11

The travelling introvert.

United Airlines Boeing 777–200 taking off at A...
On occasion I get to travel for work.

There is a commercial by courtyard where part of the the tag line is: "Some people have to travel for work, some people get to travel for work."

I am most certainly in the latter category.

I think one of the things that makes traveling as an introvert interesting is we do tend to pay attention to our surroundings a little better than others. Especially when I travel alone.

In her book  Susan Cain describes the physiological differentiation from an Extrovert and Introvert. The Introvert can be hyper stimulated by their environment. This stimulation can be managed through training, but at times it can overwhelm those who don't know how to handle it.

Recently I had a chance to travel to Boston for work. I wrote this little snippet on my Facebook page about a little girl I encountered during my layover:

Walking through this long terminal looking for my next gate, bumping into people and trying not to walk on people's feet it's hard to actually notice any individuals. But then I heard it.

I had to look around through the throngs of people to find her, but I was able to zero in on her song.

She was about 2, wearing a Wonder Woman shirt dragging a suitcase that was as big as her while holding mom's hand.

"Just keep swimming, just keep swimming", she sang.
"That's right", the Mom told her "we have a ways to go."
I almost started singing it back to her.
Made my day.

All of my children are grown, and when Finding Nemo came out they were all teenagers. But I can imagine when my kids where younger getting them to sing this song just to keep them occupied during long treks to wherever we needed to go.

There was one other little side jaunt that I was able to make during my short trip for work.

There is no need for a car when I stay in Boston, since my office is quite close to my hotel. However, I needed to get from Logan airport to my hotel.

There is a water taxi service.

It has a very reasonable rate, and you can travel across Boston Harbor. I had heard about it from  a coworker and thought I would try if I got the chance.

This trip, I got the chance.
Boston Harbor at sunset

Follow the signs in Logan for the water taxi till you reach the pier.


Then use the microphone to notify the taxi service what location you are at.

The short ride across the harbor at sunset was magnificent.



The photos I took of the excursion on the water do not do it justice.

To my fellow introverts, I encourage you to try something slightly new the next time you travel. If you have to be uncomfortable for a period of time stepping out of your comfort zone, find something interesting at your travel destination that won't take any time away from your travel objective, and try something new.

Remember, Life is what happens while you are making other plans.