Chris J Powell

Data Visualization – Seeing the Bits for the Bytes they Provide

One of my favorite pass times is to surf the grand expanse of the Interwebz for new and exciting things in the world of technology and one of my favorite sites to start that search is over at where they showcase the amazing world of Start Up companies from around the globe.  Today, in my quest for something “new” and “exciting” I narrowed my search to Canadian Companies and stumbled across a very interesting new service that applies the ability to physically see the connections and apply some insights into the Bits and Bytes that we all generate every day. Regardless of being a Business, a Brand or an Individual one of the most difficult things to do with all the many Social Media channels that we operate in is to have a real understanding of what the measure and influence is of the things that we do.  Social Media is the great and grand equalizer and regardless of if you are a small Local Business, Global Brand or a dude like me just looking to make a buck…understanding … Read more

Infographic of the Week – The World Needs Data Scientists

The world is filled with lots of Data.  Everything from your wants, desires and purchasing habits, to the co-relation of socioeconomic needs for the cities we live in…but there is a shortage of people who can look past the bits and bytes and see the Data for what it is…a gold mine of information.  What is even rarer, is the ability to turn that raw data into a usable and functional plan that can be used by businesses, governments and even consumers like you and I. This week’s Infographic is brought to you by Itellipaat, a company that provides Hadoop training.

Big Data for the Little Guy

The turning of the calendar to a new year has had me thinking long and hard about the direction of Krispy’s Bytes.  Within the world of Technology there are 3 core areas that always seem to get my attention: Open Source (Linux and GNU Software) Big Data Risk Management So as I sat back over the past few weeks and looked to what Krispy’s Bytes would become in 2015 I thought…why not focus on these three topics exclusively (with the addition of adding in the wonders of This Day in Tech History). I really want to focus on the low or no budget concept of dealing with technology challenges because having been a Small Business Owner myself…I know how tough it is to actually stretch a dollar. The Primary focus over the next several weeks will be to use a recently decommissioned computer to become a full fledged Big Data Machine, using nothing but free and open source tools.  I will be doing this for practical purposes and documenting the successes and failures as I go along. One thing that … Read more

I'm Lost Without Zite!

Before all the Flipboard fans out there jump all over me about some of the negative statements I may make here about their beloved App that feeds them their daily news content…I am not a fan, never have been…I just don’t get it…not at all.  I fell in love with Zite, an app that gave me the right amount of information, in the right doses and let me formulate what I would post about in record time. Since it was announced that Flipboard was purchasing Zite…I have been at a loss.  I re-installed Flipboard and tried to get behind the new master and I just don’t like how it is laid out, how it sanitizes what I want to look at and fails to give me as many options to find the content that actually interests me.  It is a sad day indeed, as I find myself having to resort back to Google and the Hunt and Peck method of content ingestion. What erks me about the Flipboard purchase is that they have all but stated that it is the … Read more

When Risk Outweighs Reward – The Ocean of Data

The amount of Data being generated by individuals, corporations and governments everyday is daunting and in many ways scary.  If so much data is being created (by most estimates it is around 2.5 Exabytes per day or enough to fill 2.5 Million 1TB Hard Drives) then what is being done with it all?  Is it safe? What is it used for?  Does it ever go away? This Ocean of New Data comes with many challenges but also a great many rewards and the investment in both collecting but also using and leveraging that Data is what I will look at today.  There are two interesting studies that looked at in preparation for this post: Big Data – The Risks and Rewards Locked in Vast Oceans of Data (by KPMG) GENERATING VALUE FROM ABSTRACT BIG DATA ANALYTICS (by ISACA) Looking through both of these documents it is clear that there is a huge potential upside of knowing more about…well everything and making smarter, more effective long term plans but to dive into the Risk vs. Rewards but to look at a deeper view of … Read more

Disruptive Technology is like…

Ok so we have to keep this on the down low, I don’t want Tyler Durden to find out that I am doing this.  I stumbled across a great article over at Information Week that describes Disruptive Technology like being a participant in Fight Club but as intrigued as I was with Peter Waterhouse’s look at Disruptive Technology…I thought that I would take it one step further…yep time for a new feature.  Saturday Krispification! There are many truths about working in IT or around Technology for that matter.  I for one have been engaging in “Shadow IT” for years because I not only understand the Tech but can separate business needs from personal needs quite well because the reality is…for the most part for me they are the same thing.  In the Information Week Article, Peter describes 5 Rules of the DT Fight Club…and while I liked what he had to say…the point of a “Krispification” is to put my spin on what an industry writer has put out there for the world to read. Rule #1: You do not … Read more

Free App Friday – Replacing WordPress

This is a topic that I have been flirting with for some time (basically since I started Krispy’s Rants in April of 2011.  While the power of the world’s most popular Content Management Solution (CMS) has served me well through several redesigns and a Web Host switch…a “corruption” of the Database last night is the straw that broke the camel’s back. So where do I start, well this has been my challenge right from the start.  I don’t want to have to learn the nuances of PHP Scripting to be able to function as a Blog but in many ways I am thinking that as someone with some Tech Savvy it is time to branch out and not be a slave to what ever is easiest.  There are lots of great alternatives and one of the things that the future of Krispy’s Rants must be is Open Source…so heading over to Open Source CMS lets me peer into the latest and greatest of what Open Source has to offer. Some ground Rules for my moving forward: Cannot be Ruby or Python … Read more

Big Data and Small Business

A funny thing happened to me the other day as I was trudging through my new job as a Small Business Consultant and trying to find some relevancy between what I have been doing for the past several years and the reality that I am facing today as a “Sales Guy”.  It is hard to be a Technical Sales Professional when the product that you are working with is the most un-technical out there and its purchase is based entirely on the hopes and dreams of a Small Business Owner and then I stumbled across some material that hit home. The world of Big Data may seem daunting and at times overwhelming but it affects nearly every business out there and an effective plan can definitely improve the ability and capability of a business to be successful.  The danger as usual when dealing with technology that is out of the comfort zone of a business is overextending the look down the Rabbit Hole. In a 2011 Report  titled “Big Data: Harnessing a Game Changing Asset” SAS builds a great back … Read more

Social Media Monday – The World of WolframAlpha

It really is not just good enough to post a comment or participate in a Social Discussion.  To leverage the insights and information that comprehensive analytics can provide you have several options most of them will cost you an arm and a leg as they are designed to enhance and monitor a “Brand’s Social Profile”.  For those who know me…I am cheap…full on reuse coffee filter cheap and only spend money when there is no other alternative. To start off with, WolframAlpha is not a Google Killer, it does things very differently but what it does I really like and it will very quickly become my new best friend.  There are several examples of what WolframAlpha can do but the first thing that I ran through was my Facebook Report. The information that it was able to gather about me, in just a few minutes is Shocking, Amazing and it really tells a lot about how I use Facebook and for that matter who my friends are. The most commented on Image and Post on Facebook returns us to last … Read more

Who or What or How is Hadoop being used?

I got curious today, mainly because I looked at how my current employer is harvesting potential “customers” and feeding them to us and realized that Big Data needs to be brought to the forefront for every company and understanding that it does not need to be a massive 1100 Node Cluster with 12 PB of raw Data like Facebook to be effective.  I took a swing by the Apache Hadoop page and took a quick look around. So what is Hadoop? Apache Hadoop is an open-source software framework that supports data-intensive distributed applications licensed under the Apache v2 license. It supports running applications on large clusters of commodity hardware. Hadoop derives from Google’s MapReduce and Google File System (GFS) papers. Ok so Wikipedia in its opening salvo just throws a lot of technical jargon out there and really does not get to the point that everyone can understand…so it is time for a quick Krispification of the term. What is Hadoop According to Krispy? Apache Hadoop is an open-source Big Data Framework that supports a variety of high volume data intensive connections to external applications.  It supports this by running the applications common hardware … Read more