Swimming in the Data Lake

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By: Tony DePrato | Follow me on LinkedIn

Educational organizations are face with the constant influx of seemingly new technology. This creates pressure (even a demand) to review, to compare, to challenge, and often, to change.

The business around software is not understood nor recognized by most educational institutions. Schools trust. Schools hope. Industry, generally, tries to profit. The constant churning of technology companies through mergers and venture capital initiatives creates an unstable environment. This environment breeds havoc and forces decision makers to ask: Will your vendor be your vendor tomorrow?

The game is rigged. But. There is way to take the game back. There is way to design flexibility into the ecosystem and empower decision makers to relentlessly negotiate for the deals they need, and when they need them.

For years we have focused on controlling the box, the physical interface, and the platform. In most cases, these concepts are now irrelevant. Software as a Service (SAS) has evolved to allow a tablet to carry the power of a laptop, and a laptop the power of a GPU driven workstation. SAS is just the beginning, in fact, it is only a replacement for the platform. The heart of the system is the data, and the data controls the decisions more than anything else.

The next evolution for education, K-12 and above, is to adopt new standards allowing the organization to choose their modality but maintain the standard of communication.

Educational institutions need to build a data lake, or data repository, using data from all their vendors. Any vendor that cannot meet a few basic standards, needs to be eliminated from the pool of options. These standards would be simple, and would include:

  • Data, all data, can be exported in a single data pump when required
  • Data, all data, can be exported into at least one or all of the following formats: csv, tab, sql, or xlsx
  • Downloaded Data, all downloaded data, will only have encryption if the client chooses
  • APIs and other methods to sync real time data are optional; even if these tools exist, the data export requirements must be maintained

By insisting these standards be met by vendors, educational organizations will not only be able to constantly analyze all their data, they will be able to recreate themselves when they choose. Vendors will not hold the fear of data loss, or opportunity cost, over the decision makers.

The only remaining conundrum is: how do we show every school how to do this, and how to find opportunity within this new environment?

Episode 170 -EMERGENCY! YOU MUST LISTEN

Tony and Patrick are back for an important announcement that could save your MacBook Pro when you travel!

Be sure to subscribe to us on iTunes or your favorite podcasting app.

  1. Airlines banning certain MacBook Pros
    1. https://www.macrumors.com/2019/08/29/macbook-pro-some-airline-restrictions/
  2. Google getting serious about Enterprise
    1. https://www.theverge.com/2019/8/26/20832925/google-chromebook-enterprise-dell-laptops-microsoft-windows-challenge-businesses
    2. Chrome OS not going anywhere!
  3. Amazon Web Services
  4. Office 365 Video Streaming

Download the episode HERE

Episode 160 – AI Still Sucks

Tony and Patrick are back to wish you a Happy New Year and to spread a little ed tech love your way. This show is a good one to close out 2018 so check out the talking points below and as always, be sure to subscribe to us on iTunes or your favorite podcasting app!

  1. Good article or Facebook hit piece?
    Beware Silicon Valley’s Gifts to Our Schools
  2. Tony loves the new Ubuntu, more arguments for a Chrome Based environment and App Stream-  OR – just Ubuntu and Amazon without Google Overlords
    1. https://www.ubuntu.com/
    2. App Stream runs well – https://aws.amazon.com/appstream2/
  3. Crisis plan for IT departments
    1. You Need Power or You’re Gonna Have a Bad Time (Possible Blog Post Title)
      https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1musexE29t1HkVZUDZp9jYgg-GgniSaZW4zQdkDcktxc/edit#gid=0
    2. What happens in a bad day?
  4. AI Still Sucks
    1. Service that monitors G Suite and Office 365 schools.
    2. I looks at email and Google Drive/OneDrive documents
    3. Can read text in pictures
    4. Looks for drug mentions, violence or gun use, self harm, profanity and cyber bullying
    5. 91,661 issues reported – none that require any action from administration

You can download this episode from HERE!

Or listen to it below