Ben Lorica

Ben Lorica is the Chief Data Scientist and Director of Content Strategy for Data at O'Reilly Media, Inc.. He has applied Business Intelligence, Data Mining, Machine Learning and Statistical Analysis in a variety of settings including Direct Marketing, Consumer and Market Research, Targeted Advertising, Text Mining, and Financial Engineering. His background includes stints with an investment management company, internet startups, and financial services.

Which social gaming companies are hiring

Which social gaming companies are hiring

Disney's announced purchase of Mountain View gaming startup Playdom, follows on the heels of EA's purchase of London-based Playfish last November. Based on active users, Zynga remains by far the biggest online social gaming company. But what other independent companies are growing? To see which companies are expanding, I used our data warehouse of online job postings to detect recent hiring.

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Where Facebook's half a billion users reside

Where Facebook's half a billion users reside

Facebook announced that they now reach 500 million active users (just five and half years after launching). But where do these half a billion users reside? Refreshing my post from February, the share of users from Asia continues to rise and now stands at 17% of all Facebook users. Over the past 12 weeks, Facebook added over a million active users in fourteen countries, including 5 in Asia and all three members of NAFTA.

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Popular iPhone games stay highly-ranked only for a few weeks

Popular iPhone games stay highly-ranked only for a few weeks

With 40,000+ Games to choose from, the list of Top 100 free and paid games are frequently scanned by iPhone gamers. In this short post, I'll share some basic statistics on popular games sold through the U.S. iTunes app store.

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Actually, half of all iPad Books are Fiction

Suggestions to my previous post inspired me to normalize our metadata1 for titles available through the U.S. iBooks app. A comment prompted me to rollup iBooks publishers into publishing conglomerates2: Comments from other readers gave me the idea to map the 100+ iBooks categories to the more familiar BISAC categories. Doing so means over half of all iBooks titles are…

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A few weeks in, a third of iPad Books are Fiction

Measured in terms of number of titles, half of the over 46,000 (paid and free) books available that we detected as being offered through the iBooks app are from 6 categories1. Fiction & Literature alone account for close to a third of all available iBooks titles: The current set of titles is indicative of the publishers (and/or imprints) that Apple…

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Big Data shakes up the Speech Industry

I spent a few hours at the Mobile Voice conference and left with an appreciation of Google's impact on the speech industry. Google's speech offerings loomed over the few sessions I attended. Some of that was probably due to Michael Cohen's keynote1 describing Google's philosophy and approach, but clearly Google has the attention of all the speech vendors. Tim's recent…

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Cookbooks: The highest priced iPad book category

Just like the iTunes app store, the iBooks app on the iPad spotlights the Top Paid (and Top Free) books within each category. Here are some charts that compare the average price (by rank)1 across the major categories. The average price of the Top 50 titles across the major categories range from $7-$15. Cookbooks, History, Biographies are slightly higher priced,…

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Big data analytics: From data scientists to business analysts

Big data analytics: From data scientists to business analysts

The growing popularity of Big Data management tools (Hadoop; MPP, real-time SQL, NoSQL databases; and others) means many more companies can handle large amounts of data. But how do companies analyze and mine their vast amounts of data? For companies that already have large amounts of data in Hadoop, there's room for even simpler tools that would allow business users to directly interact with Big Data.

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Twitter By The Numbers

I collected some interesting stats from today's presentations at Chirp. Over a thousand people attended the conference and the numbers below attest to how vibrant the Twitter platform is. Today's announced API enhancements (e.g., user streams, annotations) will make the Twitter ecosystem even more interesting: 1. # of registered users: 105,779,710 (1,500% growth over the last three years.) 2. #…

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Games & Entertaiment account for half of all iPad apps

Games & Entertaiment account for half of all iPad apps

98% of apps in the U.S. iTunes app store label themselves as "iPad compatible", but most were written for iPhones or iPods. One week into its launch there are about 2,300 apps that run only on iPads. Measured in terms of number of unique apps, Games and Entertainment account for about half of all the iPad apps.

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