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Thursday, July 1, 2010

Technical Insights into Google, Facebook, Salesforce.com, and More - Link to SIGMOD/PODS 2010 Conference Mediasite Catalog

On 6/13, we shared the link to the Noble Financial Conference Mediasite Catalog along with brief commentary. Today, we share another catalog from a recent event, the 2010 ACM SIGMOD/PODS Conference. For reference, SIGMOD's mission is the following:
  • The ACM Special Interest Group on Management of Data is concerned with the principles, techniques and applications of database management systems and data management technology.
Put another way, SIGMOD is a community focused on an area of the global economy that is seeing dramatic growth: the world of increasing volumes of data and how this data is organized, stored, applied, and so on. While mainstream media seemingly continues to emphasize everything that is wrong at present, there are also many positive developments occurring all around us, particularly related to Internet and mobile applications. If you want to know where there are plenty of jobs, this is a good place to look for those with the aptitude. Moreover, demand for skilled workers in this area appears poised for significant future growth.

Keynotes and an awards ceremony from the recent conference were captured with Sonic Foundry's Mediasite (old player - catalog link here) (SOFO). While fairly technical in nature, the presentations include excellent insight into what's going on behind the scenes at Google (GOOG), Facebook, Salesforce.com (CRM), and elsewhere. Curious about "the flow of information in global networks," give a look here:

SIGMOD Keynote Address, Jon Kleinberg, Cornell, The Flow of Information in Global Networks 

Separately, in the Facebook presentation, we learn that the social networking platform now has 400 million users (*more now that several weeks have passed; aside: Facebook is hiring):

A subsequent slide informs us that 70% of Facebook users are outside the United States, which we found surprising. Clearly, the world is more connected than ever, which we think is mostly good, but sometimes bad (please see earlier post for negative perspective).

Here are links to several presentations:

  • Jason Sobel, Facebook, Friday, June 11, 2010, 8:30 AM EDT, 1 Hour 6 Minutes 8 Seconds
  • Rob Woollen, Salesforce.com, Friday, June 11, 2010, 1:30 PM EDT, 1 Hour 2 Minutes 11 Seconds 
  • Jeffrey Dean, Google, Thursday, June 10, 2010, 1:30 PM EDT, 1 Hour 10 Minutes 11 Seconds 
Technology is a tough area in which to invest because things can change so quickly, yet few can deny that many amazing things are happening in tech-land. Do you watch Youtube or Hulu? Are you on Facebook? Do you Google or use Yahoo (YHOO)? Or, maybe MSN.com (MSFT)? Do you book trips online through Expedia.com (EXPE) or Priceline.com (PCLN)? Do you purchase things at eBay (EBAY), 1-800-Flowers.com (FLWS) or other online retailers? OR, how about nearly all other off-line companies that also use the Internet and large databases to run and manage their business?

Given development to-date, the online and mobile applications arena -- and the underlying computer science backbone that supports this -- will probably keep getting better and better thanks to the work of SIGMOD and all the others driving this revolution.  

Happy investing,

Jeffrey Walkenhorst

Disclosure: long SOFO, YHOO, EBAY, FLWS.

© 2010 Jeffrey Walkenhorst
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