Welcome Kurt Bollacker to the Infochimps Team!

kurt 300x225 Welcome Kurt Bollacker to the Infochimps Team!

I’m excited to announce that Kurt Bollacker is joining the team here at Infochimps as our consulting Data Scientist. I recently had the pleasure of working with Kurt on our analysis of Republican and Democrat words project, so I’m looking forward to working with him more on some awesome projects.

Kurt is also the Digital Research Director at the Long Now Foundation, which is a much respected group in San Francisco, focused on long term policy and thinking. Brian Eno, Esther Dyson and Stewart Brand are amongst its board members. Previously, Kurt was the Chief Scientist at Metaweb Technologies, which was acquired by Google this year.

Kurt and Flip first met at our first Data Cluster meetup in Austin at SXSW in 2009. Since then, they’ve continued to discuss and collaborate over Wukong, our open source tool that allows data engineers to write Ruby scripts to run big data processing on Hadoop. Kurt received his Ph.D. in Computer Engineering from UT, so he’s no stranger to Austin.

Here at Infochimps, Kurt will be joining our growing data team to design and spec our data pipeline. We ingest lots of data from many different sources, including web pages, regular FTP uploads by suppliers, and APIs, and that data then needs to go through a chain of processes before it is ready for distribution on our site or API. At Metaweb, Kurt had this exact experience in shipping large amounts of data around with Freebase, so we look forward to his vast expertise accelerating our efforts in this area.

Kurt, welcome to the team; we’re all excited to have you on board.

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