Kurt is the founder and CEO of Semantical, LLC, a consulting company focusing on enterprise data hubs, metadata management, semantics, and NoSQL systems. He has developed large scale information and data governance strategies for Fortune 500 companies in the health care/insurance sector, media and entertainment, publishing, financial services and logistics arenas, as well as for government agencies in the defense and insurance sector (including the Affordable Care Act). Kurt holds a Bachelor of Science in Physics from the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign.
Robots are coming, immigrants are taking over our jobs, outsourcing, lazy Millennials - the number of factors being blamed for the current (real) economic malaise are varied, some with a certain justification (automation is affecting employment) and some without (there is no evidence that immigration negatively takes jobs that would otherwise be filled by US citizens). However, there is almost certainly one group that is affecting the economy negatively: Boomers.
There have been a great number of articles of late talking about how manual factory labor will be going away in the relentless march of robots, drones and autonomous vehicles. While these are all technologies that will have a huge impact upon manufacturing, it is tempting to think if you consider yourself a knowledge work or professional that the job that you do is safe. The problem is that this is simply not true.
There’s a concept that’s been floating around from the realm of Big Data called a “data lake”. Now, personally, this is a remarkably misleading term, as it implies that data is like a liquid that flows, rather than the representations of people, businesses, contracts, books, widgets and anything else that can be represented as entities of some sort. You can’t dip a glass into a data lake and get some data. As metaphors go, it’s wrong in very nearly every way, and when dealing with virtual content, metaphor is astonishingly real.
Frederick Taylor has a lot to answer for. The father of "efficiency management", Taylor made a name for himself in the early twentieth century by consulting with companies, offering his services to improve a new metric that he had devised called "productivity". He would go onto factory floors with stopwatches and clipboards and would record exactly how long it took a given laborer to accomplish a given task. He would then take the best of these measurements and declare that this was where his factory workers should be producing at, proceeding to remove all "unnecessary" breaks or downtime for those workers.
Programmers love a fight. Ask a roomful of programmers the question "EMACS or VI", leave the room for coffee, come back half an hour later and there will be blood on the floor. For data storage buffs, the same question, at least lately, comes down to SQL vs. NoSQL. Each has its defenders, its book of holy writ, its benchmarks and success stories ... and each has its dark secrets and stunning failures as well.
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