OpenBI's Blog

Tuesday, April 8, 2014 - 08:09
What an exciting tournament! If you’re an NCAA hoops junkie like me, you enjoyed the past 3 weeks of action. From the upsets (Mercer over Duke…seriously, Mercer?) to Cinderella stories (Go Dayton Flyers!) to buzzer beaters and clutch shots (Kentucky’s Aaron Harrison against Louisville, Michigan and Wisconsin. That’s simply insane!) , there is no better time of year to gather with family and friends and immerse yourself in the annual basketball festival that is the NCAA tournament. You have to give second...Read more
Fund Data
By Jon Hanson, Senior Database/Relationship Consultant
Thursday, March 27, 2014 - 08:12
If you're lucky, you work for a company that gives you FREE MONEY if you're a responsible adult and ferret away retirement money in a 401K or Simple IRA plan. A hundred times I've heard the phrase, "Always take the free money," but is that always the right choice? How do you know if you're really getting a good deal? My girlfriend (for privacy's sake we'll call her 'Penelope Portman') was struggling with that decision last weekend and asked me to review her 401k pamphlet. She has her choice of 35 different...Read more
Monday, March 17, 2014 - 12:41
The brackets are set. Let the madness begin! In Part 1 of this series, I introduced two methods for ranking NCAA teams: a Linear Algebra approach based on a lecture given by Tim Chartier at the Museum of Mathematic,s and a PageRank approach which I applied by reframing the entire NCAA season as a directed, weighted graph. In this blog, we'll compare these ratings approaches with the established industry rating systems of RPI , BPI , Ken Pomeroy and Jeff Sagarin . We'll make use of R's statistical...Read more
NCAA Bracket
Monday, March 3, 2014 - 13:16
I want to thank Steve Miller for his assistance in the development of this blog. I frequently travel to New York City for business. Whenever I'm in town on the first Wednesday of the month, I head to the Museum of Mathematics to attend the monthly Math Encounters lecture. MoMath is a wonderful new museum in lower Manhattan that brings math to life for everyone. In January, Davidson College professor Tim Chartier presented an application of linear algebra to NCAA college basketball ratings/bracketology ...Read more
Steve Miller
Steve Miller
Monday, February 24, 2014 - 13:05
Sadly, I had to return to Chicagoland last Thursday afternoon from Strata 2014 in Santa Clara. The pleasant Silicon Valley weather was a much-needed respite from the severe Midwest winter. And Strata 2014 was plenty good too. Like most of the record 3,100 attendees, I participated all three days – day one of tutorials and days two and three of short keynote and 40 minute sessions. My OpenBI colleagues and I had a number of conference objectives revolving on affirming the latest and greatest big data/...Read more
Steve Miler
Tuesday, February 18, 2014 - 11:56
Super Bowl weekend was especially dreary in Chicagoland, the victim of a polar vortex winter for the ages. Between the Friday night/Saturday morning snowfall and the bitter cold that followed, my wife and I were pretty much confined to our suburban home for two days, canceling plans with friends in the city. But I resolved while snow-blowing that I wouldn't let the elements win, that I'd at least have a productive, if unexciting, weekend. And so it was I decided to watch sports on TV throughout– college...Read more
Sparkl Structure
by Chris Deptula
Monday, February 10, 2014 - 09:43
Several months ago Pentaho released Sparkl, a Pentaho application builder. Overly simplified Sparkl allows developers to package CTools Dashboards and Pentaho Kettle transformations into a plugin for Pentaho BI Server. I recently played around with Sparkl and because it was so easy to use, I decided to build a plugin of my own. I built the Pentaho Log Manager plugin allowing administrators and developers to view, download and delete logs inside of the Pentaho User Console. This eliminates the need to SSH...Read more
Pentaho logo
Friday, January 24, 2014 - 13:03
At OpenBI, we do a fair amount of work with the Pentaho Platform. In fact, I've personally been using it since version 1.6. It's changed a lot over the years and each new release offers marked improvements in the application. When new versions of any software are released, I'm skeptical. It's hard stuff for a development team to inject a ton of new features, make sure the old features work as expected, and do it within a reasonable time frame. The Business Analytics server for Pentaho 5.0 has been out for...Read more
Steve Miller
Steve Miller
Tuesday, January 21, 2014 - 09:37
My company, OpenBI, is a consulting partner of hot visualization vendor Tableau. We’re quite excited about the latest product release for many reasons, perhaps the most significant being the long-awaited integration with the R statistical platform. In the Fall, I had the opportunity to participate in the 8.1 Beta Program that provided access to Tableau product management/support for my often-dumb questions about the new functionality. The Tableau-R integration allows developers to create workbook variables...Read more
Salt and Sugar Levels in Kids Food
By Jenn Wylie, Senior Junior Foodologist
Thursday, December 12, 2013 - 14:05
I have spent the last three weeks monitoring my children's consumption of processed foods. I have watched, and measured, and recorded, and analyzed against recommended values. My findings startled me, and I am making some major changes in the way we eat in my home. This article focuses on the foods my kids like -- the foods that they will eat readily and without complaint. The foods I would leave with babysitters for ease and convenience when I could not be there to cook for them. I am sure that the list...Read more
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