Hilary Mason Speaks at Dropbox

Posted by Martin on February 23, 2012

We host a monthly tech talk series we call “Droptalks“. In the past, we’ve hosted Steve Souders, Guido van Rossum, Greg Papadopoulos, and Amit Singh.

A couple weeks ago, we were lucky to have Hilary Mason in town. Hilary is the Chief Scientist of bit.ly, the world-famous URL shortener. Bit.ly may seem like a simple service, however, when done at such a large scale there is much more behind the scenes. There’s also a lot of neat data to play with.

Hilary spoke about some of the challenges and lessons from her work trying to derive meaningful uses from the mass of data that flows through bit.ly. She spoke about the history of bit.ly, some of the philosophy of analyzing time-series data, and some cool engineering tricks. She even gave demos of three internal tools at bit.ly that will be released as products in the next few months (really cool stuff!).

The slides are available.

For those interested in learning more about Analytics and Data Science, Hilary suggested a few introductory books: