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Google and Its Fashion Forward Strategy

April 27, 2015

Enough with the advanced technology. The Google is getting into the Project Runway world. I learned a couple of days ago that the fascinating Google Glass is making a comeback. I mean a fashionable comeback. I think the phrase is fashion forward. None of the Glasshole stuff. Like New Coke, the fashionable Glass will be a winner from the Italian outfit. You can read about the new Glass or Glass 2.0 in “Luxottica Working on Intel Powered Google Glass 2.0.” Curious about Lexottica. Here’s some background information:

image

I see you.

Another fashion-tastic announcement hit my Overflight system. Here is the write up which snagged my attention: “The Latest Fashion, Trending on Google.” I learned:

…Consumers are Googling tulle skirts, midi skirts, palazzo pants and jogger pants, according to the company, which plans to start issuing fashion trend reports based on user searches twice a year. The new trend aggregations are part of the company’s bid to become a bigger player in e-commerce and fashion beyond its product search engine or advertising platform. In its inaugural report, Google distinguishes between “sustained growth” trends, like tulle skirts and jogger pants; flash-in-the-pan obsessions like emoji shirts and kale sweatshirts; and “seasonal growth” trends, or styles that have come back stronger every spring, like white jumpsuits. It makes similar distinctions among sustained declines (peplum dresses), seasonal ones (skinny jeans) and fads that are probably over and done (scarf vests).

My reaction to the announcement was anticipation. I believe that one or more of the fashionistas at Google will soon be booked to appear on Project Runway. Perhaps the Style cable channel will cover Google on campus lectures. Is there a Marie Claire photo spread about Googlers wearing the latest in Silicon Valley fashion. There are some flashy dressers at the various GOOG offices. A certain Robert W. attended a meeting with me in London in a quite sporty outfit. My recollection is that the person from a certain government agency asked me, “Is that the type of stuff Mr. Brin wore to his initial meetings with Washington DC’s movers and shakers.” I replied, “No, I think that Mr. Brin wore a T shirt with sneakers.”

I am so excited about this festive development. I will set my video recorder so I don’t miss a single episode of Project Runway. Imagine. Tim and Heidi in Google Glass 2.0. I have to take a deep breath. Will the designers use Google to make certain their one day wonders are right in step with the bpm of the style makers?

Stephen E Arnold, April 27, 2015

Big Data Debunkers Arise, Unite, Question Value

April 27, 2015

I enjoy reading the “analyses” of Blue Chip consulting firms. I have had a brush or two with the folks at these outfits over the years. I seem to recall working for one of them and doing consulting for a couple of others. At age 70, who knows?

I read “To Benefit from Big Data, Resist the Three False Promises.” Just three, I thought. To learn the truth, I sucked in the bits and learned:

Gartner recently predicted that “through 2017, 60% of big data projects will fail to go beyond piloting and experimentation and will be abandoned.” This reflects the difficulty of generating value from existing customer, operational and service data, let alone the reams of unstructured internal and external data generated from social media, mobile devices and online activity.

Zounds. A Blue Chip firm citing an Azure Chip firm. That, to me, is like the Cleveland Cavaliers tapping into a talent from a middle school basketball team. I assumed there was an intellectual gap between the Blue Chip consultants and the second tier outfits. Guess I was wrong. Another possibility is that the folks behind the article were plucking low hanging research fruit in order to make their case.

I learned that the three “false promises” were ones that just never, ever crossed my mind. The article states that there are three, count ‘em, three items of information about Big Data which are not true. Not true equals a lie, does it not?

  1. The “technology” singular of Big Data will automatically discover and present business opportunities. Shucks, I though magic happened, particularly when dissimilation was involved.
  2. “Harvesting more data” automatically generates “more value.” There’s that magic again. I was stunned to learn that collecting information does not automatically equal much of anything. If there is one thing easy to collect, it is digital information.
  3. “Good” data scientists similar those who work at Blue Chip and Azure Chip consulting firms? No matter. The “good data scientists” cannot “find value” for a paying customer. Is this a hedge to prevent consulting firm clients from alleging that the Big Data services did not yield a pot of gold?

Big Data, like most of the technology buzzwords, short circuit harried executives’ prudence. The silver tongued are able to invoke MBAisms and close deals. The benefits of those deals are often very difficult to pinpoint, quantify, or understand.

Write ups that are blunt tips on probing questions are amusing. I wonder if there is Big Data to make clear how many Big Data projects end up like other digital information silver bullets; that is, shooting blanks. Bang. Bang. Bang. That’s value.

Stephen E Arnold, April 27, 2015

Attensity’s Semantic Annotation Tool “Understands” Emoticons

April 27, 2015

 

The article on PCWorld titled For Attensity’s BI Parsing Tool, Emoticons Are No Problem explains the recent attempts at fine-tuning the monitoring and relaying the conversations about a particular organization or enterprise. The amount of data that must be waded through is massive, and littered with non-traditional grammar, language and symbols. Luminoso is one company interested in aiding companies with their Compass tool, in addition to Attensity. The article says,

“Attensity’s Semantic Annotation natural-language processing tool… Rather than relying on traditional keyword-based approaches to assessing sentiment and deriving meaning… takes a more flexible natural-language approach. By combining and analyzing the linguistic structure of words and the relationship between a sentence’s subject, action and object, it’s designed to decipher and surface the sentiment and themes underlying many kinds of common language—even when there are variations in grammatical or linguistic expression, emoticons, synonyms and polysemies.”

The article does not explain how exactly Attensity’s product works, only that it can somehow “understand” emoticons. This seems like an odd term though, and most likely actually refers to a process of looking it up from a list rather than actually being able to “read” it. At any rate, Attensity promises that their tool will save in hundreds of human work hours.

Chelsea Kerwin, April 27, 2014

Sponsored by ArnoldIT.com, publisher of the CyberOSINT monograph

 

EnterpriseJungle Launches SAP-Based Enterprise Search System

April 27, 2015

A new enterprise search system startup is leveraging the SAP HANA Cloud Platform, we learn from “EnterpriseJungle Tames Enterprise Search” at SAP’s News Center. The company states that their goal is to make collaboration easier and more effective with a feature they’re calling “deep people search.” Writer Susn Galer cites EnterpriseJungle Principal James Sinclair when she tells us:

“Using advanced algorithms to analyze data from internal and external sources, including SAP Jam, SuccessFactors, wikis, and LinkedIn, the applications help companies understand the make-up of its workforce and connect people quickly….

Who Can Help Me is a pre-populated search tool allowing employees to find internal experts by skills, location, project requirements and other criteria which companies can also configure, if needed. The Enterprise Q&A tool lets employees enter any text into the search bar, and find experts internally or outside company walls. Most companies use the prepackaged EnterpriseJungle solutions as is for Human Resources (HR), recruitment, sales and other departments. However, Sinclair said companies can easily modify search queries to meet any organization’s unique needs.”

EnterpriseJungle users manage their company’s data through SAP’s Lumira dashboard. Galer shares Sinclair’s example of one company in Germany, which used EnterpriseJungle to match employees to appropriate new positions when it made a whopping 3,000 jobs obsolete. Though the software is now designed primarily for HR and data-management departments, Sinclair hopes the collaboration tool will permeate the entire enterprise.

Cynthia Murrell, April 27, 2015

Sponsored by ArnoldIT.com, publisher of the CyberOSINT monograph

Is Google Plus Like Glass?

April 26, 2015

I remember reading that Google Plus was the new Google. I remember hearing that Googlers were induced to use Google Plus. I heard on a podcast that Google Plus was a lame duck thing, a modern Orkut.

If you are an avid social media maven, navigate to “Why Google+ Failed, According to Google Insiders.” If accurate, the write up suggests that Google’s powers of innovation are more like the power of imitation. Am I correct in recalling that Google’s ad business was foreshadowed by Overture/GoTo. Nah, that can’t be write. Imitation?

I read:

The main problem with Google+, one former Googler says, is the company tried to make it too much like Facebook. Another former Googler agrees, saying the company was “late to market” and motivated from “a competitive standpoint.” There may have been some paranoia — Facebook was actively poaching Googlers at a certain point, one source said. Google+ employees within Google were sectioned off, this person said, possibly to prevent gossip about the product from spreading. Google+ employees had their own secret cafeteria called “Cloud,” for example, and others on the Mountain View campus weren’t permitted. “There was definitely an aura of fear for a time,” this person said.

I quite like that phrase “aura of fear.” Poetic. I ran into a fear of Google. A PR distribution service would not distribute a news release with a reference to Google. No explanation, just a rejection. Interesting.

For more comments about Google Plus, read the story. I thought their might be trouble when the “+” was used in the service name. Ever try to search for a plus in the new, mobilized Google? I guess more effort went into name X Labs. Ever try to search Google for “X”?

Stephen E Arnold, April 26, 2015

Looking for GIF Files?

April 26, 2015

Need a GIF file? Check out “5 GIF Search Engines & Tools You Haven’t Heard Of Yet.” Searching for GIFs using some Web search engines can yield interesting results.

Stephen E Arnold, April 26, 2015

Scientel Hits Enterprise Search in 2015

April 25, 2015

In 2014, we noted that Scientel’s Norman Kutemperor was a leader in NoSQL data management. We learned that Scientel is beating the drum for an integrated, user friendly content management, search, and analytics system. Kutemperor has been described as the father of NoSQL.

According to “Scientel Releases EZContent Content Management and Search System for the Small Enterprise,”

Scientel’s EZContent™ Content Management and Search system operating under GENSONIX® NoSQL DB is an advanced ECM solution for “Big Data” content for the smaller enterprise. Scientel’s EZContent is derived from Scientel’s primary Enterprise Content Management & Search System (ECMS). It is the ideal, most cost-effective, and simple to operate tool for organizing, managing, and retrieving your Big Data contents at all organizational levels. Powerful, yet comprehensive and fun to use, it can start small and is highly scalable. The system can be configured for various system requirements. This makes it ideal for use in small offices/organizations as well as medium and large enterprises.

The company asserts that it has a search system which displays an information object thumbnail. The user drags a document to the system. EZContent processes 40 different file types, including images and video clips. Kutemperor explained the search system this way:

With ECMS, we are able to move the contents of that CD into our ECMS system, and all 100+ people can access that all at the same time. They can also do searches from  within what we call textual documents – PDFs, Microsoft documents mostly are all textual  documents, whereas clips, videos and pictures are not. By being able to search inside the textual document, we can actually locate what we are looking for and get to the right page that we want to read. Content management is a very valuable tool for all of us, and it is a very helpful tool for all organizations, whether it is non-profit or profit, commercial, corporate, scientific, medical, city government, small businesses or large enterprises. Everybody needs it and now can have it cost-effectively. The basic offering that we can start with is a very small appliance that is turnkey and virtually maintenance free. It is easily installed into the network and pretty much goes to work without having to do too much in the way of setup. For larger organizations, we offer appliances that can scale to very large configurations, that can store very large numbers of documents efficiently, and that are able to locate these documents rapidly.

According to CIOReview:

Scientel’s Gensonix DB is an all in one SQL. Gensonix based solutions can take the place of SQL, NoSQL and storage systems and can process large data sets in real time. Its massive core based parallel solutions deliver performance in range with in memory systems. thus performance of Gensonix on Scientel LDWA hardware matches the performance of in memory systems and with higher reliability.

In 2014 the database was described as “polymorphic.” One explanation is:

Polymorphism is the ability of an entity to behave like more than 1 of its counter parts given a set of circumstances or criteria; or, the provision of a single interface (a shared boundary across which separate components of a computer system exchange information) to entities of different types. In other words, in a polymorphic DB, you can use a relational approach when that is appropriate, hierarchical when that is, and so on. No one paradigm is fully implemented, but the DB uses enough of the features/capabilities needed to provide a reasonable solution to a problem.

These are envelope stretching assertions. The Manta entry for the company reports, perhaps erroneously, that the company has three employees. Another Manta entry asserts that the company employs five to nine people and has revenues of $1.0 million to $2.5 million. For more information about Scientel, navigate to the company’s Web site at www.scientel.com.

Should MarkLogic and other vendors offering similar products up their game? Worth monitoring this Swiss Army knife approach to information access.

Stephen E Arnold, April 25, 2015

Sponsored by CyberOSINT: Next Generation Information Access

Digital Economy Growth Engines Lose RPMs

April 24, 2015

Short honk: I read several articles about the financial reports of Facebook, Google, and Yahoo. I enjoyed the explanations about the revenues and profits. Here are the write ups open on my desktop monitor at this moment:

Is there a message to be decrypted from these data? Yep.

Stephen E Arnold, April 24, 2015

Google Allegedly Just Gets a Good Idea: A Data Platform

April 24, 2015

Wow. I read some interesting and often crazy stuff. But this is a keeper. Navigate to “Google Builds a Data Platform That’s the Last Piece of Its Ad Empire. Connects Dots for Marketers and Challenges Facebook.” Never mind that the Google has been working on the data platform thing for advertising for what is it now, 12 or 13 years. Never mind that the guts of the ad system’s interfaces have been a project at the Google for more than a decade. Never mind that the guts of the data platform idea originated before Google hired Drs. Halevy and Guha along with hundreds of other scientists and engineers eager to knit together data from Google’s various repositories. But, hey, it is an advertising Web site, and I assume advertising experts are a heck of a lot more informed than little old me.

I read:

Of course, Google faces regulatory scrutiny for any move it makes, as well as talk of anti-competitive practices. In fact, the company was charged in Europe last week with behaving like a monopoly in search. The ad tech community has been concerned that Google is offering all the services that lock advertisers into its ecosystem and squeeze out rivals.

What the write is about is the “lead” which Facebook has over Google. The problem is not technology, in my humble opinion. The problem is that Google is focused on technology and Facebook was built to allow a person to get a date. Facebook followed its social-human thing, and the GOOG has been embracing the ever lovable zeros and ones. There are Googlers at Facebook, but Facebook will not become a Google. I would argue that Google cannot become a Facebook.

The data platform is secondary to the source of the information fueling the respective systems. Facebook users are the content sources. Google’s content comes from other places. Both companies face significant challenges and neither is likely to morph into another.

Why not merge into a Googbook or Facegle? If it works for Comcast and Time Warner, it might work for Google and Facebook. Ad buys just become easier. Ad people often prefer the easy approach.

Stephen E Arnold, April 24, 2015

Research Like the Old School

April 24, 2015

There was a time before the Internet that if you wanted to research something you had to go to the library, dig through old archives, and check encyclopedias for quick facts.  While it seems that all information is at your disposable with a few keystrokes, but search results are often polluted with paid ads and unless your information comes from a trusted source, you can’t count it as fact.

LifeHacker, like many of us, knows that if you want to get the truth behind a topic, you have to do some old school sleuthing.  The article “How To Research Like A Journalist When The Internet Doesn’t Deliver” drills down tried and true research methods that will continue to withstand the sands of time or the wrecking ball (depending on how long libraries remain brick and mortar buildings).

The article pushes using librarians as resources and even going as far as petitioning government agencies and filing FOIA requests for information.  When it makes the claim that some information is only available in person or strictly for other librarians, this is both true and false.  Many libraries are trying to digitize their information, but due to budgets are limited in their resources.  Also unless the librarian works in a top secret archive, most of the information is readily available to anyone with or without the MLS degree.

Old school interviews are always great, especially when you have to cite a source.  You can always cite your own interview and verify it cam straight from the horse’s mouth.  One useful way to team the Internet with interviews is tracking down the interviewees.

Lastly, this is the best piece of advice from the article:

“Finally, once you’ve done all of this digging, visited government agencies, libraries, and the offices of the people with the knowledge you need, don’t lose it. Archive everything. Digitize those notes and the recordings of your interviews. Make copies of any material you’ve gotten your hands on, then scan them and archive them safely.”

The Internet is full of false information.  By placing a little more credence out there, will make the information more safe to use or claim as the truth.

These tips are useful, even if a little obvious, but they however still fail to mention the important step that all librarians know: doing the actual footwork and proper search methods to find things.

Whitney Grace, April 24, 2015

Sponsored by ArnoldIT.com, publisher of the CyberOSINT monograph

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