Monkey Business

More Complex in Asia: Mapping the Most Visited Website by Country

Being engulfed in the online world, this article from FlowingData caught my attention about the most visited website by country. Mark Graham and Stefano De Sabbata from Information Geographies mapped the most visited site based on Alexa data. Countries are sized by Internet population.

Seeing the pretty visual graphic along with the post didn’t draw my attention to the red and blue (the obvious Google and Facebook takeovers in the Americas and Europe), but instead to the massive screaming green.

TopSitePerCountry InternetPopulation More Complex in Asia: Mapping the Most Visited Website by Country

Mark Graham and Stefano De Sabbata’s findings suggest “the situation is more complex in Asia, as local competitors have been able to resist the two large American empires. Baidu is well known as the most used search engine in China, which is currently home to the world’s largest Internet population at over half a billion users. At the same time, we see a puzzling fact that Baidu is also listed as the most visited website in South Korea (ahead of the popular South Korean search engine, Naver). We speculate that the raw data that we are using here are skewed. However, we may also be seeing the Baidu empire in the process of expanding beyond its traditional home territory. The remaining territories that have escaped being subsumed into the two big empires include Yahoo! Japan in Japan (in join venture with SoftBank) and Yahoo! in Taiwan (after the acquisition of Wretch). The Al-Watan Voice newspaper is the most visited website in the Palestinian Territories, the e-mail service is the most visited in Kazakhstan, the social network VK the most visited in Belarus, and the search engine Yandex the most visited in Russia.”

READ More Complex in Asia: Mapping the Most Visited Website by Country



Thank you FlowingData for providing interesting findings for us data nerds.


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Inbound + Nate Silver = Inspired Chimps

At Infochimps, we take professional growth development seriously. Last week, Infochimps gave the marketing team the opportunity to attend Hubspot’s Inbound 2013 conference in the beautiful city of Boston.

The 4-day inbound marketing conference delivered everything from product demos, educational sessions, and networking opportunities well beyond my expectations. The high level of excitement for the keynote speakers was anticipated due to the heavy lineup, but nothing could have prepare me for the inspiration each of them delivered.

Keynote speakers Inbound + Nate Silver = Inspired Chimps

Seth Godin inspired me to become someone everyone remembers when I’m out of the room, Arianna Huffington inspired me to renew myself, Scott Harrison inspired me to give back, and of course, there was Nate Silver, the statistician who has made a big name for himself in the Big Data space, inspired me to be more creative in business.

If I had to focus on one keynote speaker for this blog post, it would undoubtedly be Nate Silver. He was the perfect keynote for us Big Data marketing nerds. Famous for his predictions for the last two presidential elections through data analysis, Nate Silver explained the gap between the promise and the reality of Big Data and proposed 4 suggestions for using data to make better business decisions.

The following image was my favorite slide – representing Big Data’s challenge – compliments to Christopher Penn for capturing a better image than my own.

Big Data Issue1 Inbound + Nate Silver = Inspired Chimps

Too awed to jot down all his inspiring quotes, I tried the best I could.  Then I came across this article, “9 Inspirational Quotes from Nate Silver at HubSpot’s INBOUND 2013“, that pinpoints some spot-on incredible quotes. My favorite quote is, “if you don’t know where you are in the present, it’s hard to take quality steps toward the future.”

Nate concluded his keynote with this final slide, his final suggestion to the road of wisdom:

photo 1024x646 Inbound + Nate Silver = Inspired Chimps

Thank you Infochimps for valuing my professional growth, thank you Hubspot for a successful Inbound conference, and thank you to all the marketers who thrive to inspire each and every day.

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Announcing Infochimps Cloud 3.2

AllCloudServices 1024x515 Announcing Infochimps Cloud 3.2

Moving petabytes or even hundreds of terabytes of data to the public cloud can be costly and time consuming work. Since its conception, the goal of the Infochimps Cloud has been to provide the elasticity, scalability, and resiliency of cloud-based big data infrastructure, but in any environment you choose. That may mean the public cloud such as Amazon Web Services, but that may also mean a virtual private cloud, an outsourced data center such as Switch SuperNAP, or your own internal corporate data center.

With the latest release of the Infochimps Cloud, we’re excited to fully realize that vision of easily to moving your data analytics solution to your data, not just moving data to your analytics solution.

Full Private Cloud Support
Infochimps provides not only provides analytics cloud services, but also virtualization integration. With this newest release, the Infochimps Cloud fully integrates with VMware® vSphere®. This integration empowers customers to deploy the full Infochimps stack internally, leveraging their own data center and their own hardware, and either their own VMware software or an integrated Infochimps + VMware solution.

private cloud deploy options 1024x505 Announcing Infochimps Cloud 3.2

This virtualization integration framework, powered by Ironfan and Chef, enables the Infochimps Cloud to deploy to any data center where hardware and virtualization are available. For example, Infochimps partner Switch has a Tier 4 facility in Las Vegas with a 100% data center uptime guarantee, where Infochimps can quickly and seamlessly deploy big data solutions that have unrivaled reliability and high availability.

Ultimate in Cloud Mobility
One of the amazing differentiators of utilizing Infochimps Cloud is the concept of cloud mobility. Start in one environment, such as Amazon Web Services, to quickly build your application and provide a development and testing platform for your team. At any time, you can quickly migrate both your cloud services infrastructure and your big data application logic to a different environment, such as SuperNAP or your internal data center, for your final production application.

cloud hybrid and migration 1024x201 Announcing Infochimps Cloud 3.2

This is enabled by both the Ironfan homebase and application Deploy Pack frameworks, which provide folder structures to encapsulate your infrastructure and application code, and seamlessly allow them to plug into different hardware and different cloud services nodes respectively.

While this capability makes a lot of sense for applications that have sensitive data or security concerns, this also is extremely useful when customers want to get started as quickly as possible. Infochimps can turnover a completely configured Amazon Web Services environment in just a few days, developers and analysts can begin cranking away, and simultaneously a data center environment can be prepped for the eventual second stage of infrastructure deployment.

Improved Developer and Data Scientist Tools
Also major improvements have been made the user experience in working with Infochimps Cloud platform.

Wukong 3.0 is the latest DSL and command line toolkit for rapid big data application development:

  • Updated wukong-hadoop for writing Hadoop Streaming jobs with simple micro-scripts
  • All new wukong-storm for taking your Wukong flows (stitching together data sources, “processors,” and data destinations) and deploying them as Storm topologies
  • All new wukong-deploy for quickly generating Deploy Packs for encapsulating your application logic that can be tested locally, then be deployed to your Infochimps Cloud solution

The Infochimps Cloud API has been enhanced for more cross-platform functionality:

  • Unified monitoring metrics are available for understanding what is happening within the platform
  • It’s even simpler to store configuration values and settings, which can be utilized by any of your applications across the various Infochimps cloud services

To learn more about the Infochimps Cloud and the latest enhancements, request a demo today.

Cloud. It’s More Than Just Price

It’s not about price, as GigaOM recently posted an article that discusses shifting motivations for adopting cloud.  Sure, adopting cloud will in some cases be a smaller total cost of ownership (TCO), as well as representing a variable (OpEx) expenditure instead of one big upfront investment (CapEx). Despite cloud vendor focuses on cost, customers note that time to value is the top motivation.

everest group cloud chart Cloud. Its More Than Just Price

Barb Darrow of GigaOM notes:

What’s interesting to me is that this debate is evolving much like the discussion around Software as a Service (SaaS) did a decade or so ago. Initially, when was coming into its own, most of the sales pitch was around price. Salesforce was so much cheaper than Siebel Systems.

Of course, when Microsoft started rolling out its own cloud-based CRM, that price-based argument dissipated. […] Then Salesforce’s benefits became that it freed companies from the tedium and expense of on-site server and software upgrades. You could focus on business and leave the IT heavy lifting to your provider.

Customers want to build out applications or see a return on investment as fast as possible regardless of the project; cloud enables faster iteration and agility. No need to worry about operational headaches — particularly around complex systems like streaming data pipelines or Hadoop clusters. This is a primary reasons why Infochimps’ customers choose our managed, cloud services approach to Big Data.

An even more concrete analysis is performed by Virtual Geek, with some key quotes:

[…] it’s not about being “cheaper than IT”, it’s about:

  • Being more agile than traditional IT.
  • Being more elastic economically than traditional IT.
  • Being more more price transparent than traditional IT.
  • Being more “frictionless” than traditional IT.

[…] The place for traditional IT?   IMO – Internal IT are shifting to be more of “IT services brokers”, and less about “operators”.

[…] This isn’t about technology, and the COST is not the benefit of the IaaS model of AWS EC2, it’s that the OPERATING MODEL that is the benefit.

Business units are demanding more insights and delivery on projects that IT has never had to tackle before, such as:

  • Managing terabytes and sometimes petabytes of data
  • Capturing and analyzing social media, ad impressions, website clickstreams, stock prices, and other fast moving data
  • Producing predictive insights, machines learning, statistical modeling, and interactive visualizations and dashboards

IT organizations are discovering that these complex projects don’t have to become the bane of existence and frustrate them for the next several years. These initiatives can be de-risked by embracing “cloud” to iterate more quickly – build faster, fail faster, learn faster, win faster. Cloud empowers the IT team to focus on proving out projects, not just on herding the fundamental systems.

Tim Gasper is the Director of Product for Infochimps. He was previously co-founder and CMO at Keepstream, a social media curation and analytics company. He graduated from Case Western Reserve University with dual degrees in Economics and Management and originally from Cleveland, Ohio.

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Image Source: GigaOM – Everest Group – Cloud Connect 2012 Enterprise Cloud Adoption Survey

There’s an app for that: Visualizing the Internet

“There’s an app for that.”

We’ve heard it many times, the spoken certainty that the necessities of the world are satisfied by an app.

We love cool apps as much as anyone, so FlowingData caught our attention again with this blog post: “App shows what the Internet looks like

Visualizing the Internet Theres an app for that: Visualizing the Internet

“In a collaboration between PEER 1 Hosting, Steamclock Software, and Jeff Johnston, the Map of the Internet app provides a picture of what the physical Internet looks like. Users can view Internet service providers (ISPs), Internet exchange points, universities and other organizations through two view options — Globe and Network. The app also allows users to generate a trace route between where they are located to a destination node, search for where popular companies and domains are, as well as identify their current location on the map.”

Now that’s a cool app.

Read more details here >> and download the app for free on iTunes.

Thank you FlowingData for providing interesting posts for us data nerds.

119efc1b cf09 4f4f 9085 057e76e0464c Theres an app for that: Visualizing the Internet

Image source:

Fact or Fiction: Big Data and Marketing Myth Busters

  • Amanda McGuckin Hager

Big Data and Marketing Myth Busters Fact or Fiction: Big Data and Marketing Myth Busters

As the uses of Big Data continue to evolve with the creation of platforms and dashboards that promise in-the-moment marketing feedback, much skepticism arises as to whether or not they can deliver on their promise: real-time decision making analytics that are actionable and accessible without a team of data-scientists.

Though advancements are being made every day and with an infinite future of refinement to come, there naturally exists some uncertainty around Big Data, and what it can actually offer marketers. Here are a few of the most common misconceptions fueling such apprehension:

Myth: Campaigns take weeks, if not months to execute.

Truth: Big Data makes real-time campaigns a reality.

As stated simply by GigaOm’s Ravi Mhatre, “Big Data is useless unless it’s also fast”. At a time when social and mobile walk hand-in-hand, marketing departments must be agile, and capable of acting at the drop of a hat (or tweet). The fact is that Big Data has entered an era where “real-time” is possible, and business dashboards power crucial decisions in-the-moment.

Myth: Marketers must still rely on “gut” decisions, which may or may not be reliable.

Truth: Big Data powers success through simple data-driven decisions.

Another common theme among skeptics is the notion that the only people equipped to understand Big Data insights are the data scientists that are siloed in departments and organizations far away from management and marketing. This is simply not the case.

Widely available tools allow marketers and other business experts to derive data-driven insight without having the technical expertise of a data scientist. Marketers can now perform sophisticated analytics to deliver truly actionable information about efficiencies (or lack thereof) within a business, as well as tangible insights about customers.

Myth: Much data is useless.

Truth: All data is powerful; Big Data makes it possible for a business to find unexpected stories and insights.

With traditional techniques, data storage is expensive, and therefore finite. Consequently, companies have had to pick and choose which data is important enough to keep, and have thrown away data which actually could have yielded valuable insight. With new Big Data technologies drastically reducing the storage and management price tag, companies now have the freedom to save and analyze everything – those who do will quickly begin to uncover gems.

As buzz builds around potential enterprise Big Data use-cases, so does hesitation and concern that this is just a fleeting trend; but this couldn’t be farther from the truth.

While we’ve finally reached the point where it is feasible for businesses to tap and start to understand the data that streams from their market, operations, and customers, there’s still much room for refinement. Although one can justifiably state that we’ve entered the era of Big Data, where campaigns can be executed quickly and insights can be pulled in real-time, we’ve just hit the tip of the iceberg in terms of the untapped potential of these technologies.

Amanda McGuckin Hager is a high-tech marketing professional with over 17 years of experience focused on driving demand through strategic marketing programs. She is the Director of Marketing at Infochimps. Follow Amanda on Twitter.

Image Source:

6fefa857 2e95 4742 9684 869168ac7099 Fact or Fiction: Big Data and Marketing Myth Busters

Infochimps CTO Named Top 100 Contributors to GitHub 2012

Github Infochimps CTO Named Top 100 Contributors to GitHub 2012Flip Kromer, Infochimps Founder and CTO, also known as MrFlip, was named by GitHub as one of the Top 100 Contributors in 2012. Flip made over 2,300 contributions to the global, open source developer community.

And he’s in good company. Also on the list are: Linus Torvals of Linux, Erik Michaels-Ober, and Dr. Nic Williams.

In addition to being a prolific code contributor and one of the nations’ leading data scientists, Flip is the author of Big Data for Chimps, A Guide to Massive Scale Data Processing, published by O’Reilly, and available for pre-order now.

About GitHub: Github, a Forbes’ Top Tech Company of 2012 and the largest code host in the world, was founded in 2008 and is leading enterprises to adopt open source technology. Github, known for social coding, was founded as a place for developers to code together, as teams and individuals.

About Infochimps: The Infochimps Platform for Big Data combines leading data technologies with managed cloud services, a strong partner network to empower customers with unprecedented speed, scale and flexibility in their Big Data initiatives. Infochimps is a privately held, venture-backed company with offices in Austin, TX and the Silicon Valley. Follow @infochimps on Twitter.

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[Infographic] What Big Data & Your Kids Have in Common

  • Amanda McGuckin Hager

Big Data is changing the game for strategic marketing programs. More data is available to marketers than ever before, and intelligently using this data is driving huge increases to the bottom line.

As a marketer, I’m always looking to improve campaign conversions. Show me the data, and I’ll start asking questions with the curiosity of a child.  Check out some of the top questions our customers are asking of Big Data, and some of the corresponding questions that might be asked by a curious child.

Props to the curious, to the driven and to the ones asking the questions. The answers will drive your company forward.

bigdatakids infographic v3 623x1024 [Infographic] What Big Data & Your Kids Have in Common
Amanda McGuckin Hager, a high-tech marketing professional with over 17 years of experience focused on strategic marketing programs that drive demand, is the Director of Marketing at Infochimps. Follow Amanda on Twitter.

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$100m vs. $600m: Open-Source Big Data vs. Proprietary Databases

Money Laptop1 $100m vs. $600m: Open Source Big Data vs. Proprietary Databases

I recently read this ZDNet article, which I thought was an awesome comparison between open-source Big Data vendors such as Infochimps and Cloudera, and proprietary database vendors like Oracle.

The case study: the cost of operating the YouTube stack. Given YouTube’s technical requirements, what would it cost to operate YouTube’s infrastructure on Oracle instead of using open-source tools?

“In a nutshell, the Oracle Exadata capital expenses for hardware and software total $589.4 million compared to an open source and commodity hardware cost of $104.2 million.”

The following chart shows the numbers breakdown:

Big Data Provisioning System1 $100m vs. $600m: Open Source Big Data vs. Proprietary DatabasesOpen-source software is free. That’s the huge difference. Even if you added another several million dollars for open-source Big Data software support, you’d still come in at less than a quarter of the proprietary database cost.

As companies get more comfortable with trusting open-source tools, the economic value is undeniable. Add the benefits of getting direct access to the code, a huge open-source community, and an unlimited supply of examples and documentation… open-source is fast becoming a no-brainer. It’s only a matter of time where many proprietary strongholds such as BI, BPM, and Data Warehousing are supplanted by open-source Big Data platforms and applications.

What will continue to push open-source adoption and proliferation? (1) Making it easier to gain expertise in using those technologies, or just making them easier to use in the first place, (2) vendors can implement those technologies quickly and efficiently to keep costs down, and (3) high quality open-source vendor support services to offer peace of mind.

blog platform demo v21 $100m vs. $600m: Open Source Big Data vs. Proprietary Databases

ZDNet Article courtesy of Larry Dignan
Money and Laptop image courtesy of BigStock

Konami Code Doppelgangers

Konami Code Konami Code Doppelgangers

After a morning discussion about 80s video games and nerd culture, we thought we would share with you, faithful blog reader, one of greatest secrets of the Infochimps website.

Go here to our team page and give it a whirl.  Bonus geek points if you can spot all the references!