Ever since OSCON, O'Reilly have been doing a great job of finding interesting conference niches. Strata is their latest offering and caters for the ever-growing community of programmers, business analysts and stats gurus helping industry to make sense of the huge volumes of data now being recorded throughout the digital world.
It was interesting watching the collision currently occurring between the hip young data science community and folks who’ve been running analytics or data warehouse operations for years. Although journalism may seem a little sidelong to all that, I suspect the common ground is people's desire to see analytical insights arranged into narrative sequences. If we're not careful, data journalists may end up the Crystal Reports experts of our time 😉
Anyhow, my talk on how we worked with Datasift to visualize the Murdoch hearing segued into an interesting line up. Immediately prior was Hjálmar Gíslason describing Iceland's datamarket.com – an attempt to build “Google for numbers” – and the work they've been doing to provide a set of standard visual components. Following me was Irene Ros, formerly of IBM's ManyEyes team, describing some situations where data visualization makes it easier for people to follow a narrative and others that don't.