Global Azure Bootcamp: Talk on HDInsight and Recommendation Engines

Not more than a week after the 50-year anniversary of Moore’s Law, the 2015 edition of Global Azure Bootcamp is taking place at more than 183 locations around the world. Speak about global computing at scale! It’s a truly amazing effort driven by the local Azure communities across the planet — and I have been fortunate enough to participate in the Copenhagen camp.

Ever since I started grad school in Madrid, I have been very interested in statistics and quantitative methods in general. With Microsoft I have dived even more into the world of big data and machine learning — topics on which I have given a ton of presentations ever since I started as a Tech Evangelist.

At the Global Azure Bootcamp I gave a presentation on how to build your own recommendation engine by using Hadoop in Azure through the service named HDInsight. The case is to build a song recommender that can suggest new songs to users based on the songs they have listened to in the past and the songs that other users have listened to (i.e., user-based collaborative filtering). Essentially, the case is to build what Spotify, YouTube and other popular media services are doing.

I recorded the presentation and uploaded it to YouTube. Check it out below. Also, check out the PowerPoint presentation below the YouTube video if your are particularly interested in the slides used in the talk. If you have any questions to this topic, do not hesitate to drop a comment. I will try to be quick at getting back to you! 🙂

Here are the slides:

Demo: Running Python 3.4 and Django 1.7.5 in Azure

This evening I had the pleasure of giving a talk at Python meetup in Copenhagen about running Python 3.4 scripts and Django 1.7.5 web apps in Microsoft Azure. A really great crowd showed up and a lot of the people had some really interesting questions — that always generates some good discussions! 🙂

I’ve recorded the presentation and uploaded it to YouTube. You can find it right here — I hope it will be useful to you:

Building a Recommendation Engine with Apache Hadoop 2.4.0 (HDInsight 3.1 in Azure)

Last week I gave a presentation at Campus Days 2014 on how to build a recommendation engine using HDInsight 3.1 in Azure. In this blog post I will go through the steps to replicate the demo I gave in the presentation. I will start from scratch with a brand new HDInsight cluster (version 3.1) and describe each of the necessary steps.

If you are just interested in downloading my PowerPoint presentation you can do that here:

Let’s Get Started

The steps to complete this demo might seem complicated. But really they are not! So don’t lose faith while going through this blog post (even though it might be long). You will get there and hopefully you will have learned something in the process.

In order to follow this guide you need to complete a few prerequisites:

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