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Explore/Exploit: Driving Big Business Value with Big Data
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12 June 2014



The euphonious phrase “Explore/Exploit,” borrowed from machine learning, captures the essence of Big Data methodology. On the one hand, there is the exploratory process of examining new data—and examining old data in new ways. Through these explorations, data scientists and other analysts discover valuable signals that have the potential of delivering value to the business. But once the insights have been discovered, they need to be “exploited” if that business value is to be realized. Unfortunately, the road from insight to execution can be long and torturous. Further, the same resources that might be put to use exploring new insights are often also needed to exploit old insights – leading to a trade-off between exploring and exploiting.

This talk will outline an “agile” approach to Big Data business optimization based on this explore/exploit metaphor. This approach will be contrasted against the heavy weight approaches of classic Enterprise Data Warehousing. Common obstacles to both exploration and exploitation – many of them non-technical – will be discussed. Real-world examples will be used to illustrate the points.

This talk should be of interest to attendees who want to understand how Big Data fits into the larger business context, and/or attendees looking to understand how to use Big Data techniques and technologies to transform themselves into data-driven organizations. The talk will touch upon the technologies and technical techniques that are specific to Big Data, but in a manner that should be accessible to a general audience, for the purpose of providing deeper insights into the business benefits of Big Data.





Raymie Stata comes to Altiscale from Yahoo!, where he was Chief Technical Officer. At Yahoo, he played an instrumental role in algorithmic search, display advertising, and cloud computing. He also helped set Yahoo’s Open Source strategy and initiated its participation in the Apache Hadoop project. Prior to joining Yahoo!, Raymie founded Stata Laboratories, maker of the Bloomba search-based e-mail client, which Yahoo! acquired in 2004. He has also worked for Digital Equipment’s Systems Research Center, where he contributed to the AltaVista search engine. Raymie received his PhD in Computer Science from MIT in 1996.