Results of my first poll ever

A week ago, I decided to publish the first ever poll on the Lightweight Linux. I asked my readers if the can write code and if they actually do it.

Interestingly, most of my readers either write code at least sometimes or would like to learn to write program code.

This should not come as a surprise: the Linux users are, after all, geekier than the general audience. Most of us probably have read a few computing books and can at least write an occasional script.

During the last week I've been busy working on some client search engine optimizing (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM) cases. At the moment, my main software tool for keeping the spreadsheet data in order is Excel, even if I very often decide to export the data into CSV files that can be searched, sorted and analysed very easily with tools like grep and sort.

The main reason for my interest in polishing my coding skills is that I want to be more efficient in analysing the business data. Some scripting is always necessary for being able to transform the data into actionable knowledge. Only then the data can be used to inform me in making better use of client money in marketing.

Fortunately, the OS X command line provides me with all the tools I need for this. Basically all the experience I have gained with using Linux is transferable to OS X shell. Thus there is no real need for building a dual boot system with Linux.

Moreover, it would be far more useful to install Windows on the Macbook as the "free" Excellent Analytics tool can only be used with Windows version of Excel.

Of course, I would be more than happy if there is a really free alternative framework that can be used for connecting Libre Office with Google Analytics. In that case I would have something to tell my colleagues at work -- and a reason for pushing free software forward in a business environment.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

If you'd be interested in a free software program that makes sense of data exported from Excel, you might try R (http://www.r-project.org/). Not only is it free, it's extremely powerful and flexible for all types of data analysis and just about any data file type. Its only downside for most users is the start-up costs to get used to the coding, but that sounds like something you're familiar with and interested in already - if only in a different language.
Cheers,
Jana Marie

Mikko said...

Thanks for the suggestion! In fact, I have already used R for the empirical part of my master's thesis in economics. Unfortunately, I have still some work to do with it. At least the implementation of Bry-Boschan algorithm works decently :)

My biggest problem with R has been that I use it so rarely that I always forget how to do even the most elementary things like how to import CSV...