Archive for the ‘Mortar’ Category

Free Recommendation Engine!

Friday, April 11th, 2014

Giving Away Our Recommendation Engine for Free by Doug Daniels.

From the post:

What’s better than a recommendation engine that’s free? A recommendation engine that is both awesome and free.

Today, we’re announcing General Availability for the Mortar Recommendation Engine. Designed by Mortar’s engineers and top data science advisors, it produces personalized recommendations at scale for companies like MTV, Comedy Central, StubHub, and the Associated Press. Today, we’re giving it away for free, and it is awesome.


But before the FOSS folks get all weepy eyed, let’s remember that in order to make use of a recommendation engine, you need:

  • Data, lots of data
  • Understanding of the data
  • Processing of the data
  • Debugging your recommendations
  • Someone to make recommendations to
  • Someone to pay you for your recommendations

And those are just the points that came to mind while writing this post.

You can learn a lot from the Mortar Recommendation Engine but it’s not a threat to Mortar’s core business.

Any more than Oracle handing out shrink wrap copies of Oracle 36DD would impact their licensing and consulting business.

When you want to wield big iron, you need professional grade training and supplies.

Mortar’s Open Source Community

Tuesday, November 19th, 2013

Building Mortar’s Open Source Community: Announcing Public Plans by K. Young.

From the post:

We’re big fans of GitHub. There are a lot of things to like about the company and the fantastic service they’ve built. However, one of the things we’ve come to admire most about GitHub is their pricing model.

If you’re giving back to the community by making your work public, you can use GitHub for free. It’s a great approach that drives tremendous benefits to the GitHub community.

Starting today, Mortar is following GitHub’s lead in supporting those who contribute to the data science community.

If you’re improving the data science community by allowing your Mortar projects to be seen and forked by the public, we will support you by providing free access to our complete platform (including unlimited development time, up to 25 public projects, and email support). In short, you’ll pay nothing beyond Amazon Web Services’ standard Elastic MapReduce fees if you decide to run a job.

A good illustration of the difference between talking about ethics (Ethics of Big Data?) and acting ethically.

Acting ethically benefits the community.

Government grants to discuss ethics, well, you know who benefits from that.

Million Song Dataset in Minutes!

Thursday, March 7th, 2013

Million Song Dataset in Minutes! (Video)

Actually 5:35 as per the video.

The summary of the video reads:

Created Web Project [zero install]

Loaded data from S3

Developed in Pig and Python [watch for the drop down menus of pig fragments]

ILLUSTRATE’d our work [perhaps the most impressive feature, tests code against sample of data]

Ran on Hadoop [drop downs to create a cluster]

Downloaded results [50 “densest songs”, see the video]

It’s not all “hands free” or without intellectual effort on your part.

But, a major step towards a generally accessible interface for Hadoop/MapReduce data processing.


Thursday, March 7th, 2013


Mortar has its own YouTube channel!

Unlike the History Channel, the MotorData2013 channel is educational and entertaining.

I leave it to you to guess whether those two adjectives apply to the History Channel. (Hint: Thirty (30) minutes of any Vikings episode should help you answer.)

Not a lot of data at the moment but what is there, well, I am going to cover one of those in a separate post.

Mortar [Public Launch, Python and Hadoop]

Wednesday, November 28th, 2012

Announcing our public launch

From the post:

Last week, we announced our $1.8 million fundraising. For those of you who follow big data startups, our blog post probably felt…underwhelming. Startups typically come out and make a huge publicity splash, jam-packed with buzzwords and vision galore. While we feel very fortunate to have what we need to help us grow, we know that VC funding is merely a means, and not an end.

But now you get to see us get really excited, because Mortar’s Hadoop PaaS and open source framework for big data is now publicly available. This means if you want to try it, you can activate your trial right now on our site without having to talk to anyone (unless you want to!).

You can get started on Mortar using Web Projects (using Mortar entirely online through the browser) or Git Projects (using Mortar locally on your own machine with the Mortar development framework). You can see more info about both here.

All trial accounts come with our full Hadoop PaaS, unlimited use of the Mortar framework, our site, and dev tools, and 10 free Hadoop node-hours. (You can get another 15 free node-hours per month and additional support at no cost by simply adding your credit card to the account.)

Mortar accepts PIG scripts and “real Python.” So you can use your favourite Python libraries with Hadoop.

I don’t know if there is any truth to the rumor that Mortar supports Python because Lars Marius Garshol and Steve Newcomb use it. So don’t ask me.

I first saw this in a tweet by David Fauth.