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FCW : April 30, 2013
The notion of the popular "Star Wars" character saying, "Do big data or do not, there is no try," seems comical. Yet the take-home message from Carah- soft s Government Big Data Forum in April was that individuals and their insights are the key to determining how useful big data is. Keynote speaker Kirit Amin, depu- ty CIO at the Commerce Department, invoked Yoda as a metaphor for the master of an art. "Why can t we hire 12 to 15 Yodas who understand the big picture [of big data] and tell them, Your mandate is to make this big thing hap- pen? " he asked. Amin s proposition came in response to an attendee s question about the need for employees who can analyze the mountains of data that grow larger by the day. The question also referenced policies that discourage data-sharing between agencies, thereby hindering feds ability to combine data from dif- ferent sources to glean larger insights. Amin said those highly trained, data- focused individuals should be spread across the government. "My proposi- tion is to nd these people --- they are out there --- and their mandate is to set vision and break barriers," Amin said. Paul Brown, CEO of enterprise soft- ware company Koverse, added that the government is leading the way on big data, but technical innovation will not be enough to maximize its potential. It might be 10 to 20 years before we see where big data goes, Brown said, but by then youngsters who now doodle on iPads and have never seen a rotary phone will be running the big- data show. Leaders "goals should be to create the right environment so that the kid who is 9 years old and doesn t know a world without iPads, when they come to government, it s right for them to innovate," Brown said. In another panel discussion, experts addressed common big-data mistakes agencies make. Chris Biow, federal chief technology officer and vice president of MarkLogic, said the longer agencies wait to see if a big-data pilot project works, the more money they waste. By contrast, an agile approach would allow agencies to quickly detect failures and make adjustments. "What s done wrong is we commit ourselves to two- to three-year pro- cesses because we think big data is hard so it probably takes that long," Biow said. "When you do that, you set yourself up for the most expen- sive software bug that exists, which is your requirements." --- Frank Konkel Seeking Yodas to help federal agencies do big data better April 30, 2013 FCW.COM 11 was the average score (on a scale of 100) that feds gave their leaders in the Best Places to Work study --- 2.1 points lower than the previous year 52.8 When you re ready to do something bigger When you re ready to advance your career You are ready for American Public University American Public University is ready to help you move your career forward. We offer respected degrees in Business Administration, Information Technology, Security Management, Management, Military Management and Program Acquisition, and more --- completely online. We re also able to provide our students with opportunities beyond the virtual classroom working with select Fortune 500 companies and government agencies. And people are taking notice. We ve been nationally recognized by the Sloan Consortium for effective practices in online education. When you re ready, visit StudyatAPU.com/FCW We want you to make an informed decision about the university that s right for you. For more about the graduation rate and median debt of students who completed each program, as well as other important information---visit www.APUS.edu/disclosure.
April 15, 2013
May 15, 2013