About

tommartens
Germany

Bio: For a couple of years (trying to conceal that I'm not any longer in my early twentieth), not to say my complete professional business life, I tried to transform data into actionable information, and succeeded very often (I think there were one or two situations where I failed). My personal feeling is that now are the most exciting times ever (at least so far) in the realm of Data Processing (sometimes called Business Intelligence, Data Warehousing, Business Analytics, or something completely different). There are so many fascinating tools that enable us to get meaning out of our data. I'm still thrilled by plain SQL statements, MDX statements, and also DAX statements (after conquering the Evaluation Context), that reveal secrets inside myriads of data (provided that technology is at hand that answers my questions fast enough). And with the possibilities to access Big Data stores not just with Map & Reduce scripts but also with SQL or for example with R in combination with analytical methods to provide information for different contexts make me feel that there are no limits to gain insight from all this data. This in combination with the mobile access to a broad range of different data stores and the possibilities to visually present data in compelling and revealing forms are exciting. I really like to wade through tons of data and look at this data from many perspectives trying to reveal important (what ever important really means) insights, but of course I'm trying to always be aware of what John W. Tukey once said: "The combination of some data and an aching desire for an answer does not ensure that a reasonable answer can be extracted from a given body of data." After all, if there are some findings in my data that I want to keep or share, I'm always trying to make these findings shine and special. Due to the fact that our visual system is one of the most effective data processing systems (we are still alive because of the fact that we were able to detect the sneaking tiger in the grass) most of the time I will visualize my findings in one way or another. Hence I will write most often about data visualizations, maybe sometimes from a more general perspective, and sometimes there will be a lot of R code involved. I have to admit that R is my favorite tool, for many reasons, starting with its capabilities to scrape information from websites, combine this with data from traditional data stores, use some funny algorithms on this data and finally visualize the results with one of the powerful charting packages available. One reason, why I'm started blogging is that I learned a lot from the writings of other people sharing their insights with the community and if there is at least one reader who will also learn something from this blog I would be honored (so, this my attempt to paying back to the community). Another reason why I'm writing is that I want to resolve my puzzlements about the things happening in this data driven time, so every comment is welcome (I guess most of them :-)). And the final reason why I started writing is that from my personal point of view there is much writing where I totally disagree, trying to provide a different angle to a special topic. Please keep in mind that this blog only represents my personal point of view and does not necessarily correspond to the current or a future development of the company I'm working for (even if I'm trying to make the company adopt my point of view :-)) Currently I'm working for Alegri International Service GmbH (www.alegri.eu) in a great team of data driven people. As a Principal Consultant for SQL Server & Analytics, I'm focussing on Business Intelligence, Data Warehousing, and Analytical challenges as well as the Visualization of Data.

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4 thoughts on “About”

    1. You’re welcome! I aleady adressed the “blurriness” to the people of Microsoft. In contrast to the usage of an image for Reporting Services (see my previous post) where you can influence the resolution of the image, this seems to be more complcated in Power BI, at least for the moment.

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