Tuesday, January 21, 2014

HP Titan - a notable presentation by Dr. Ira Cohen, HP Software

A great and impressive talk by Ira Cohen, CTO of HP Software at our applied ML meetup yesterday. HP got to the conclusion that they can not hire enough data scientists. So they set an operation where smart programmers are educated to use data science tools. First the programmers undergo a 5 days applied ML course. Then they are supplied with Titan which is basically ML tooset for dummies. Titan have 4 conceptual steps:
1) Data import - connects to data sources like twitter, salesforces, web, database etc
2) Data filter - automatic data filtering and normalization, user selects the interesting target to predict. 
3) Data analytics - the systems suggests automatically which ML methods to use. The user just clicks then ones that fit. (Very high level - like classify, regress etc.).
Once a topic is selected, few algos are run in parallel and the results shown to the user. 
4) Publish - once the user is happy with the results, he can publish in one of several visual forms like graphs, geographical maps etc. The publish creates either an interactive web page or pdf with the results. 

The results are very impressive. around 70 programmers had the ML training. In 4 months they have created around 30 projects which many of them are pushed towards deployment in production.

One case study he gave is customer leads prediction. You simply select data source = salesforce, you select the target (sell/ no sell), the ML method (classify), after a few minutes you an interactive application with zoomable US maps that shows you  sales predictions. Everything is highly visual and appealing.

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