PM2: It’s All About Me: Techniques for Driving Truly Personal Information Experiences
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  YY Lee   YY Lee
FirstRain, Inc.
  Marty Betz   Marty Betz
VP, Technology
FirstRain, Inc.
  David Cooke   David Cooke
VP, Analytics
FirstRain, Inc.


Tuesday, August 19, 2014
01:30 PM - 04:45 PM

Level:  Technical - Advanced

Personalization is becoming an assumed part of technology UX. Rapid advances—and increased expectations set by flagship consumer apps—create both a need and an opportunity for enterprise software to deliver analogous experiences on a per-person basis, in the context of traditional applications and workflows.

Many semantic and data science techniques focus on characterizing and understanding a target data set. To close the last-mile gap towards a high-impact information experience for each person, we need techniques to discern individual care-abouts — which present the familiar challenges of being heterogenous, unstructured, overly sparse or noisy, and sometimes self-conflicting.

YY Lee, COO of FirstRain, will discuss data and analytics techniques for building user profiles, leveraging explicit vs. implicit factors, and the challenges of ambiguity—and how to discern what a user truly cares about in order to create a highly adaptive, individualized information experience. Some of the topics the session will cover:

  • What factors can you leverage to build profiles and nuanced understanding of users? (implicit vs. explicit data, positive indicators v. false positives, rationally-derived characteristics, etc.)
  • What information is easy, and what is hard, to get?
  • What can we do with sparse or changing information?
  • What techniques do you use to understand what a user cares about and create an adaptive experience for them?

YY Lee is COO of FirstRain, leading engineering, SAAS, modeling and analytics in the United States and India. YY and the FirstRain team develop patented technology and analytic algorithms that continually analyze unstructured global and social web data – and then dynamically derive the implicit and explicit business developments, as well as structural changes, within and between companies. YY has been working at the intersection of math and software through her entire career; she is dedicated now to real-time semantic and data science engines focused on distilling insights, meaning and impact from the global and social web. Before FirstRain, YY was Vice President of Worldwide Services at Cadence Design Systems, leading that business into profitability. Before Cadence, she co-founded the software company Aqueduct. She earned her A.B. in mathematics from Harvard University.

Marty combines a passion for data-intensive analytics with substantial management expertise. He has over 20 years of experience building algorithm-focused software applications. As a founding partner of Beon Software, he designed systems for the collection and analysis of real-time text communication. Marty previously led an EDA software product group at Credence Systems and managed development of software for their original EmiScope product line. He has been a partner and associate at several technical consulting firms, delivering software in fields ranging from drug development to dynamic pricing and customer categorization. Before a career in software, Marty was a math professor at the University of Texas, Austin. Marty holds a Ph.D. in mathematics from Stanford University, and an A.B. from Harvard University, also in math.

David brings over 25 years of experience growing high-performance global organizations, most recently as an executive in the services organization at Cadence Design Systems. Before Cadence, David co-founded business consultancy MarketSpeed, with additional prior roles at Sun Microsystems and Fairchild Semiconductor. David holds a B.Sc. in Engineering Science and an M.Eng. in microelectronics and management from the University of Durham, England.

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