Dear diary... of an analytics junkie
It can be interesting to see what you were thinking about a few years ago and whilst looking for something in my historic work emails (almost like reading an old diary) I stumbled across this gem.
No email addresses other than my old company's are shown so I'll leave it for those who know me to try and figure out who Stuart and Andrew are. Whilst many parts of this email are interesting (I was really into Gary Vaynerchuk videos back then) the key is the section I highlighted. It has to do with Natural Language Generation software and whilst those 3 companies (Yseop, Narrative Science and Automated Insights) are still some of the more well known ones in the industry I've come across another (Arria NLG) who is also intriguing in terms of their offering. Each of these companies offer various levels of capabilities and will be a best fit depending on the client requirements. The fact that I was discussing it in 2016 (and earlier) and in 2018 it's being introduced to new industries shows that take up has not been as rapid as it could be but this presents some unique opportunities to give clients and their users a lot more value. I've seen many of the capabilities across these applications and certainly don't think that just a few lines of hand-written code of my own could match what these guys can provide. Happy to chat with anyone who is interested in how this type of software can help them.
Another revelation was my view of open source software and the state of paid for analytics tools at the time. I saw them as expensive and not necessarily fit for purpose. I saw open-source as a tool that could fix many a problem but this was a little naive. Having seen how slow things can progress when you tackle it with open source tools, I know that the answer isn't all one way or another. What is required is a keen understanding of the problem you're trying to solve and using agile methods to get in some quick testing and prototyping. Interestingly, the business intelligence/reporting applications have been improving their pricing standards since then and aren't quite the expensive hammers I thought they were. With Microsoft having thrown down the proverbial gauntlet with its Power BI product, the business intelligence landscape will continue to change and give users more value for money. No longer expensive hammers but certainly a set of tools that can unleash your organisations potential.
Do you have any old emails or blogs that you look back at and find are interesting?a