Sunday, October 27, 2013


Greg Satell (@Digitaltonto)
10/27/13 7:21 AM
Why Big Data
  For most of the 20th century, business leaders relied on “scientific” studies and “statistical significance” to determine what information they could trust.  Now, technology is making those assumptions obsolete and the practice of management will never be the same.

In business, we often run into very similar problems.  We need to make decisions based on incomplete information in a rapidly changing context.  So not surprisingly, Gauss’s work has formed the basis of many of the statistical techniques that modern day management employs, such as regression analysis, to make sense of a messy world.

yes., but what if life doesn't fit a linear regression...
unless of course.. we make it fit
there begins our dance with stress.. no?

Before long Fisher’s methods were adopted by business, culminating in the Six Sigma movement that purported to achieve stable and predictable results.  Much like Fisher’s earlier efforts, it was thought that by controlling every aspect of the process, uncertainty could be tamed and management could be transformed from an art into a science

Rules For Control


Underlying his methods was an emphasis on controls.  Put good data in and you would get good answers out.

ha. bravo.. grazie Greg

Yet all was not well.  Many, Nassim Taleb in particular, argued that control was a dangerous illusion.  Anything that met a basic standard of statistical significance (usually 95% confidence) was treated as fact.  False certainty led managers to discard inconvenient information as “outliers,” often with disastrous results.

Hovering in the background all this time was an alternative approach called Bayesian inference, which allowed you to simply make a guess and then revise your judgement as new information came in.  It was, in many ways, the polar opposite of Fisher’s approach. No specific controls, no rules about significance, just an updating of probabilities.
Although Bayesian methods were successful in some important cases where controlled studies weren’t an option, such as hunting German subs during World War II, they weren’t widely deployed.  Part of the reason was that Fisher and his followers fought hard against them, but mostly it was because they were impractical.  It was hard to gather enough data to make them work.
That’s what big data is starting to change.  The combination of accelerating returns in storage and processing power, along with a sea of data from the Web of Things and increasingly efficient algorithms, are making Bayesian methods not only practical, but faster, cheaper and more accurate than the traditional approach.

guess and try and listen

Like any new technology, there is a lot of confusion surrounding big data.  There are endless debates about what is and isn’t big data, armies of consultants who are eager to muddy the waters in return for a hefty retainer fee and the usual amount of hype and alphabet soup of acronyms and buzzwords.
But what you really need to know about big data is this:  It represents a fundamental shift in how we do things.  In effect, big data opens the door to a Bayesian approach to strategy where we no longer try to be “right” based on controlled research and small samples, but rather become less wrong over time as real world information floods in.
In effect, big data opens the door to a Bayesian approach to strategy where we no longer try to be “right” based on controlled research and small samples, but rather become less wrong over time as real world information floods in.

Greg Satell (@Digitaltonto)
10/27/13 7:21 AM
RT @FastCompany: Visualizing Bitcoin's Amazingly Fast Spread Around The World

Zeynep Tufekci (@zeynep)
10/27/13 7:21 AM
BDP—legal Kurdish party in Turkey—can have DC event w/ US reps & ambassadors. Yet, Facebook keeps shutting them down.…

Zeynep Tufekci (@zeynep)
10/27/13 7:25 AM
The party in question can have DC events with high-level US reps and is legal in Turkey. Only illegal on Facebook.…

Kevin Prentiss (@kprentiss)
10/27/13 7:25 AM
where russell brand makes his case beautifully:…

pluralistic ignorance awakes..
now so many realize..
hey.. I was thinking the same thing...

Political activism is as strong as ever, but now it's digital – and passionate: by @EthanZ

Original Tweet:

. @willrich45 @SilberbergMark @cpaterso "knowledge is a consequence of experience." (Piaget) Learning is experience.

Original Tweet:

Teny Oded Gross (@tenygross)
10/27/13 7:28 AM
Sunday Dialogue: The Rise of Incivility, via

Hostile messaging, abrupt e-mails, and caustic online posts and reviews have normalized an uglier and less empathic side of human behavior — and colored our politics and entertainment as well

YouTube comments.. we thought were good for nothing.
perhaps #1 in gs's 3

it' s not that human nature has changed; we have simply become more transparen

gs - easier to find #1

We are not built to like everyone, but we are built to behave civilly. We need to reinforce this message in schools, homes and sports programs, and within the worlds of digital culture and commerce.

indeed.. the years of stomach churn at baseball and then softball and then soccer events

Tenys quote... violence is man made. we can prevent it.
Teenagers — and adults — must be called out on excessive sarcasm, bilious remarks, soft bullying and anything that denigrates another individual.
2 prominent bad turned good memories

Dirty Wars (@DirtyWars)
10/27/13 7:49 AM
Dirty wars not just #drones, also night raids, renditions, cluster bombing, cruise missiles, surveillance, proxy armies, torture.

Christopher Mims (@mims)
10/27/13 7:38 AM
Bicycles are outselling cars in Europe and that might not be just a…

"they are applying evidence-based a phenomenon that is political, emotional and largely irrational"

Original Tweet:

Daniel Gilbert@DanTGilbert
@Rasmus_Faber @DrGBuckingham econs suggest suicide rates are higher in happy countries b/c small # of unhappy ppl feel worse by comparison.