DataTalks 10/25/14: first meeting

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Good evening! Today for the first time we are talking about data analysis in our blog. For many, this is an extremely urgent topic. However, in Belarus there are not many really useful meetings and conferences devoted to analytics.
October 25, 2014 in Minsk hosted the first DataTalks. DataTalks are informal meetings of data analysis experts. For participants, this is a great opportunity to learn about the experience of using analytics in companies operating in the global and local markets, as well as get acquainted with experts in the field of data analysis from various industries.

Speakers from Wargaming, Yandex, and Nanotech, using examples of the tasks they solve, explained the general patterns and applicability of algorithms that are important to know and use when analyzing data in any industry. Questions for the speakers turned into professional discussions, which could not be stopped even by the beginning of the next report.


For more information on how the idea of ​​creating DataTalks came about, we asked Sergey Kadomsky , the ideological inspirer of the analytics community and Wargaming research director:
The idea to organize such an event came up after we started looking for experts in the field of data analysis in Belarus to exchange experiences. It turned out that there are few such people and many of them are not even aware of each other's existence. At the same time, the experience of our company indicates that data analysis is not just a competitive advantage, but a prerequisite for creating products and doing business in the international arena. I am sure that our events will have a beneficial effect on the professional development of data analysts, and as a result, on the increase in the efficiency of work of Belarusian companies both in the domestic market and on the world stage.
I am very pleased that with the support of Wargaming, we were able to bring together 200 professionals who are interested and professionally involved in data analysis.
On behalf of the company I want to thank the speakers and all participants in the event. We plan to hold the next meeting in February 2015, we will be glad to see you again!

Let's move on to performances. The first word on DataTalks was taken by Michael Levin.

Mikhail Levin, head of the big data analysis group, Yandex Data Factory
"How to make millions on your data and machine learning."
Michael conducted a short excursion into the Yandex.Direct world. This is a system for placing relevant contextual advertising in each search query, thanks to which Yandex receives the main profit. He spoke about the basic principles of Yandex.Direct and how introducing Machine Learning should not be mistaken, testing the effectiveness of new algorithms on real users.
View and download the presentation of Michael here .

Ksenia Petrova, COO
“Data mining in practice. Pitfalls of data analysis ”
Xenia, from the point of view of her experience, spoke about the common mistakes that analysts face. It was about how to properly build processes to avoid these errors, and thereby save time and money. To do this, researchers should strictly monitor the quality of data, study the experience of other analysts, endlessly improve models, and most importantly, remember that a business task should always come first.
View and download the presentation of Xenia here .

Sergey Kadomsky, Wargaming Research Director
“How to Sell Analytics to Business,”
Sergey said, using what approaches analytics can be built in the business as a whole, and how this happens specifically in Wargaming. It was about the features and principles that analysts should remember in working and communicating with the business in order to get a result that suits both sides.
View and download Sergey’s presentation here .

Ivan Myakishev and Aleksey Yurkevich, data scientists at Wargaming
“Compromises in Data Science”
Every specialist encounters this in their professional activities: at some point, we understand that the theoretical knowledge obtained at the university and from the specialized literature does not work. Real life are not examples from the Machine Learning online course. Ivan and Alexei spoke about the main compromises that business and analysts have to make in working together. These are compromises in speed, accuracy and simplicity. The importance of these compromises was shown by the speakers using examples from their experience at Wargaming.
You can view and download the presentation of Ivan and Alexey here .

Alexander Grinchuk, Associate Professor, IBMT BSU, Nanotech LLC
“Practical application of Data Mining technologies based on real business problems in various industries”.
Alexander spoke about the national features of the Belarusian market of data analysis. Using real business problems as an example, he showed the main problems that specialists face when implementing Data Mining in Belarus. This is not enough clear understanding of the need for processing, storage and analysis of data from the business, and the low level of processing quality often offered by specialists to the business.
View and download the presentation of Alexander here .

Round table on current issues of data analysis.
In the end, a round table was organized for the most active and interested professionals. The main topic of discussion was the prospects of using Data science in the business of Belarus and Russia.

We hope you are interested in DataTalks. Join the analytics community on LinkedIn , where you can discuss interesting professional cases and useful materials.
Would you like to discuss a specific topic on the next DataTalks? Or would you yourself like to submit a report? Email us at

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