Book Review: The Glass Cage

The Glass Cage is a sequel of sorts to Nicholas Carr’s brilliant book from 2010, The Shallows. Whereas his earlier book dealt with broad topics pertaining to the internet and its effect on our thought processes, The Glass Cage zeros in on the dangers of our excessive reliance on software automation.
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Book Review: The Shallows

With The Shallows, Nicholas Carr establishes himself as a worthy successor to authors of groundbreaking books dealing with the history of technology, taking his place beside Lewis Mumford’s Technics and Civilization and Marshall McLuhan’s Understanding Media.
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Book Review: Keeping Up with the Quants

Thomas Davenport, author of the best-selling Competing on Analytics, has penned a follow-up book titled Keeping Up with the Quants. Written with co-author Jinho Kim, this new title focuses on the process of analytics, and on the realities of communicating with analysts who may have more quantitative skills than yourself.
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Book Review: Now You See It

The focus of Now You See It lies at the intersection of data analysis and visualization. As described by its subtitle, “Simple Visualization Techniques for Quantitative Analysis,” the author’s purpose is to explain how visual charts and graphs can complement the process of data analysis by allowing the analyst to perceive patterns in data. Filled with many illuminating graphics, this book is well-researched, persuasive and just plain fun to read.
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Book Review: Big Data

It must be said that the current enthusiasm that surrounds “big data” is not all hype. The concept is based on reality, and this book explains why that is so. The authors note that between 2000 and 2007, the total amount of data stored digitally increased from 25% to over 90%. With this massive deluge of data, there has been a resulting paradigm shift in how one thinks about data. In fact, the authors coin the term “datafication” to describe recent attempts to utilize data in new and creative ways.
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Book Review: Competing on Analytics

Like a well-written play, Competing on Analytics grabs the reader’s attention and establishes the basic premise early in the first scene. In its first few pages, the authors relate the compelling story of how Netflix beat the odds and triumphed over the then dominant Blockbuster to capture the loyalty of those who rent movies.
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Book Review: To Save Everything, Click Here

The glib title of To Save Everything, Click Here belies the serious nature of the book. A better indication of the Evgeny Morozov’s intent is provided by its subtitle: The Folly of Technological Solutionism. In this work, the author repudiates the idea that the majority of human problems can be addressed solely with technology, referring to this ideology as “solutionism.” In his view, such solutions appear to be successful only within their narrow framework, and often have unintended consequences.
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Book Review: Data Virtualization for Business Intelligence Systems

An ugly reality of Business Intelligence development is the immense effort that is required to build and maintain the data warehouses that lie behind such an endeavor, particularly when data is coming in from multiple sources. In a typical situation, this task requires the use of ETL software to load data into the data warehouse, while transforming it to the desired structure. There is an inherent inflexibility in the procedure, since any change in design requires altering the ETL and reloading data.
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