Web Services Training Classes in Juneau, Alaska

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Big data is now in an incredibly important part of how many major businesses function. Data analysis, or the finding of facts from large volumes of data, helps businesses make many of their important decisions. Companies that conduct business on a national or international scale rely on big data in order to plot the general direction of their business. The concept of big data can be very confusing due to the sheer scale of information involved.  By following a few simple guidelines, even the layman can understand big data and its impacts on everyday life.

What Exactly is Big Data?

Just about everyone can understand the concept of data. Data is information, and information is everywhere in the modern world. Anytime you use any piece of technology you are making use of data. Anytime you read a book, skim the newspaper or listen to music you are also making use of data. Your brain interprets and organizes data constantly from your senses and your thoughts.

Big data, much like its name infers, simply describes this same data on a large sale. The internet allowed the streaming, sharing and collecting of data on a scale never before imaginable and storage technology has allowed ever increasing hoards of data to be accumulated. In order for something to be considered “big data” it must be at least 10 terabytes or more of information. To put that in perspective, consider that 10 terabytes represents the entire printed collection of material in the Library of Congress. What’s even more remarkable is that many businesses work with far more than the minimum 10 terabytes of data. UPS stores over 16 petabytes of data about its packages and customers. That’s 16,000 terabytes or the equivalent to 1,600 printed libraries of congress. The sheer amount of that data is nearly impossible for a human to comprehend, and analysis of this data is only possible with computers.

How do Big Data Companies Emerge?

All of this information comes from everywhere on the internet. The majority of the useful data includes customer information, search engine logs, and entries on social media networks to name a few. This data is constantly generated by the internet at insane rates. Specified computers and software programs are created and operated by big data companies that collect and sort this information. These programs and hardware are so sophisticated and so specialized that entire companies can be dedicated to analyzing this data and then selling it to other companies. The raw data is distilled down into manageable reports that company executives can make use of when handling business decisions.

The Top Five:

These are the five biggest companies, according to Forbes, in the business of selling either raw data reports or analytics programs that help companies to compile their own reports.

1. Splunk
Splunk is currently valued at $186 million.  It is essentially a program service that allows companies to turn their own raw data collections into usable information.

2. Opera Solutions
Opera Solutions is valued at $118 million. It serves as a data science service that helps other companies to manage the raw data that pertains to them. They can offer either direct consultation or cloud-based service.

3. Mu Sigma
Mu Sigma is valued at $114 million.  It is a slightly smaller version of Opera Solutions, offering essentially the same types of services.

4. Palantir
Palantir is valued at $78 million.  It offers data analysis software to companies so they can manage their own raw data analysis.

5. Cloudera
Cloudera is valued at $61 million.  It offers services, software and training specifically related to the Apahce Hadoop-based programs.

The software and services provided by these companies impact nearly all major businesses, industries and products. They impact what business offer, where they offer them and how they advertise them to consumers. Every advertisement, new store opening or creation of a new product is at least somewhat related to big data analysis. It is the directional force of modern business.

Sources:
http://www.sas.com/en_us/insights/big-data/what-is-big-data.html

http://www.forbes.com/sites/gilpress/2013/02/22/top-ten-big-data-pure-plays/

http://www.whatsabyte.com/

 

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Controversy was recently courted as Southern California Edison (SCE) prepares to cut their own staff while looking to meet their staffing needs with offshore employees skilled in the field of “IT” or Informational Technology. This has been the second major utility company in the United States to take this path towards providing services to its consumers while holding current rates at consistent levels. SCE does not disclose the exact numbers of expected lay-offs, but the LA Times reports that it is in the hundreds.  Utility companies tell their consumers that these moves are necessary as a hedge against inflation and to keep their services at rates that their customers can easily afford. Critics claim that the use of foreign workers is the first step to using an entirely foreign workforce and promoting large scale unemployment amongst American citizens. Often this has been seen as a conflict between national and international workers for the same jobs, salaries and careers.

It has been noted that this State of California utility company, much like other corporations that hire foreign workers does so primarily when there is a shortage of national citizens that can perform these jobs well. IT workers that are brought in with H-1B Visa work permits usually are college educated and hold expertise in technical areas and studies that local employees may not be especially trained in. Once again, critics decry the fact that these employees are not hired directly. On shore contracting companies operating in the continental United States are directly hired by the utility companies. These contracted companies then serve as “middle-men” and hire a wide range of foreign workers with H-1B paperwork so that they can move to the United States. The workers then perform a variety of jobs instead of American workers who were either born in the country or have achieved American citizenship on their own.

Needless to say, the amount of visas issued in a given year is a concern for U.S workers in various fields but particularly in Information Technology. As large corporations stack the employment deck with foreign workers who put in the hours for a fraction of the pay-rate for local employees, local IT professionals are finding it more difficult to find work nationally.  They encounter rejections, endless interview processes or low –ball offers from companies and recruiting agencies looking to fill positions at a bare minimum cost for coveted skill-sets.  


Meanwhile, an H-1B worker is a worker brought in on a temporary basis with a visa allowing them to work freely in the United States. Much like a student or travel visa, it is issued for on a calendar oriented basis.  Applicants who successfully renew the visa for an extended period of time can expect to work in the United States for up to ten years.  Although U.S companies hiring these employees may pay them less than their local employees, the salaries earned by H-1B Visa workers are almost always higher than these workers would earn in their own country of origin.

Both sides can agree on several issues. When it comes to these H-1B Visa workers, their assignments are generally of a contractual nature and require them to reside in this country for a period of months to years. However it is also an accepted fact that while they are in this country, they are responsible for paying rent, utilities and all other living expenses. As residents of the United States on a permanent basis, they are also liable for taxes on any salary they have earned while living here.

Dr. Norman Matloff, a professor at the University of California, Davis and writer on political matters believes the shortage to be fiction. In his writing for the University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform, he claims that “there has been no shortage of qualified American citizens to fill American computer-related jobs, and that the data offered as evidence of American corporations needing H-1B visas to address labor shortages was erroneous. The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) agrees with him and describes the situation as a crisis. Likewise, other studies from Duke, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and Georgetown University have disputed that in some years, the number of foreign programmers and engineers imported outnumbered the number of jobs created by the industry

Back in the late 90's, there were a number of computer scienctists claiming to know java in hopes of landing a job for $80k+/year.  In fact, I know a woman you did just that:  land a project management position with a large telecom and have no experience whatsoever.  I guess the company figured that some talent was better than no talent and that, with some time and training, she would be productive.  Like all gravey train stories, that one, too, had an end.  After only a year, she was given a pink slip.

Not only are those days over, job prospects for the IT professional have become considerably more demanding.  Saying you know java today is like saying you know that you have expertise with the computer mouse; that's nice, but what else can you do.   This demand can be attributed to an increase in global competition along with the introduction of a number of varied technologies.   Take .NET, Python, Ruby, Spring, Hibernate ... as an example;  most of them, along with many others, are the backbone of the IT infrastructure of most mid-to-large scale US corporations.  Imagine the difficulty in finding the right mix of experience, knowledge and talent to support, maintain and devlop with such desparate technologies.

Well imagine no more.  According to the IT Hiring Index and Skills Report, seventy percent of CIO’s said it's challenging to find skilled professionals today.  If we add the rapid rate of technological innovation into the mix of factors affecting more businesses now than ever before, it’s understandable that the skill gap is widening.  Consider this as well:  the economic downturn has forced many potential retires to remain in the workforce.  This is detailed in MetLife's annual Study of Employee Benefits which states that“more than one-third of surveyed Baby Boomers (35%) say that as a result of economic conditions they plan to postpone their retirement.”  How then does the corporation hire new, more informed/better educated talent?    Indeed, the IT skills gap is ever widening.

In order to compensate for these skill discrepencies, many firms have resorted to hire the ideal candidates by demanding they possess a christmas wish list of expertise in a variety of different IT disciplines.  It would not be uncommon that such individuals have a strong programming background and are brilliant DBA's.  What about training?  That is certainly a way to diminish the skills gap.

With the rise of the smart phone, many people who have long seen themselves as non-gamers have began to download and play to occupy themselves throughout the day. If you're a game developer who has a history of writing your code in C#, then perhaps this still emerging market is something you should consider taking advantage of. This, however, will require the familiarization with other programming languages.

One option for moving away from the C# language is to learn Java. Java is the programming used for apps on the android platform, billions of phones run on this programming language.

If you want to break into the android market, then learning Java is an absolute must.

There are both some pros and some cons to learning java. Firstly, if you already know C# or other languages and understand how they work, then java will be relatively easy to learn due to having similar, but quite simplified, syntax to C-based languages, the class library is large and standardized, but also very well written, and you might find that it will improve the performance and portability of your creations. Not to mention, learning java opens you up to the entirety of the android app and game market, a very large and still growing market that would otherwise stay closed off to you. That's too much ad and sale money to risk missing out on.

The few cons that come with learning the language is that, when coming from other languages, the syntax may take some getting used to. This is true for most languages. The other problem is that you must be careful with the specifics of how you write your code. While java can be written in a very streamlined fashion, it's also possible to write working, but bulky, code that will slow down your programs. Practice makes perfect, and the knowledge to avoid such pitfalls within the language.

If you wish to develop for the iOS on the other hand, knowledge of Objective C is required. The most compelling reason to learn Objective C is the market that it will open you up to. According to the website AndroidAuthority.com, in the article "Google play vs. Apple app store", users of iPhones and other iOS devices are much more likely to spend money on apps rather than downloading free ones.

Though learning Objective C might be a far jump from someone who currently writes in C#, it's certainly learn-able with a little bit of practice.

 

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A successful career as a software developer or other IT professional requires a solid understanding of software development processes, design patterns, enterprise application architectures, web services, security, networking and much more. The progression from novice to expert can be a daunting endeavor; this is especially true when traversing the learning curve without expert guidance. A common experience is that too much time and money is wasted on a career plan or application due to misinformation.

The Hartmann Software Group understands these issues and addresses them and others during any training engagement. Although no IT educational institution can guarantee career or application development success, HSG can get you closer to your goals at a far faster rate than self paced learning and, arguably, than the competition. Here are the reasons why we are so successful at teaching:

  • Learn from the experts.
    1. We have provided software development and other IT related training to many major corporations in Alaska since 2002.
    2. Our educators have years of consulting and training experience; moreover, we require each trainer to have cross-discipline expertise i.e. be Java and .NET experts so that you get a broad understanding of how industry wide experts work and think.
  • Discover tips and tricks about Web Services programming
  • Get your questions answered by easy to follow, organized Web Services experts
  • Get up to speed with vital Web Services programming tools
  • Save on travel expenses by learning right from your desk or home office. Enroll in an online instructor led class. Nearly all of our classes are offered in this way.
  • Prepare to hit the ground running for a new job or a new position
  • See the big picture and have the instructor fill in the gaps
  • We teach with sophisticated learning tools and provide excellent supporting course material
  • Books and course material are provided in advance
  • Get a book of your choice from the HSG Store as a gift from us when you register for a class
  • Gain a lot of practical skills in a short amount of time
  • We teach what we know…software
  • We care…
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