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The Technical-Skills-People-Skills Chart: Be Aware of Negative Energy

The technical skills and people skills are important metrics determining how valuable employees are to a company. In this article, we argue that employees with excellent technical skills may be negative energy, if accompanied with poor people skills. First, let's examine the technical-skills-people-skills chart. The blank squares correspond to the employees who are poor either in technical skills or in people skills, and not excellent in any. Such employees generally do not exist in a company -- they either were not hired in the first place, or have been let go. Majority of the employees possess ok technical skills and ok people skills, although the "ok" bar varies from company to company. Good engineers tend to have excellent technical skills and ok people skills, while good managers tend to have excellent people skills and ok technical skills. It can be rare to get employees who are excellent in both -- they are the super stars. It is questionable whether to h
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Two Recent NECINA-DIG Events Where I Gave Talks

In the past I've attended multiple events hosted by  NECINA . Recently the Director of  NECINA-DIG  invited me to speak in two events. On May 4, 2017 I was invited to be the sole speaker of  a NECINA-DIG  meetup event .  The title of my talk was "Big Data Platform Landscape by 2017". The talk slides are available at .  There were around 40 professionals who attended. On May 14, 2017 I was invited to be a panelist of  Big Data and Artificial Intelligence in Financial Technology  at  2017 Boston FinTech Forum with Ant Financial . My co-panelists included   Peng Xu  ( Senior Director of Artificial Intelligence, Ant Financial),  Charles Wang  ( AI and Big Data Scientist/Entrepreneur), and  Greg Woolf  ( Founder & CEO, Coalesce.Info). There were around 200 people who attended. NECINA stands for New England Chinese Information and Networking Association. Founded in 1996 (the year I came to the United States), it is a non-profi

Introduction to the Blog Site

This is my personal blog site, on topics related to big-data analytics platform. Roughly speaking, the platform layer of the big-data stack includes software technologies that enable the development of analytics software. For instance, distributed database systems can be considered to be at the platform layer. A little introduction of me the blogger. I think of myself a Big-data Hands-on Architect . After I got my Ph.D. in database systems in 2002 (University of California, Riverside), I worked as a faculty member for 7 years and then switched to the industry. I've moved from Microsoft to Paradigm4 to Facebook. At Microsoft I worked on a single-server system (Microsoft SQL Server). At Paradigm4 (which was founded by Turing Award Laureate Mike Stonebraker) I led the engineering team to develop a "tight-clustering" distributed system (SciDB). At Facebook I'm working on "loose-clustering" distributed systems (Spark, etc.). These experiences provided me a rea