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Strata Data Superstream: Data Science Fundamentals



Topic: Data
Alistair Croll

Big data has been with us now for over 10 years, and in that time the tools and techniques have evolved. If you’re new to working with data or looking to understand the latest and greatest, these sessions are the perfect way to become part of the conversation. You’ll learn how AI and the cloud have impacted how we grapple with ever-growing datasets and get better insight and products.

About the Strata Data Superstream Series: This four-part series of half-day online events gives attendees an overarching perspective of key topics that will help your organization maximize the business impact of your data.

What you'll learn-and how you can apply it

  • Understand the problems the modern data stack helps solve today and get a glimpse of where we’re headed
  • Get an overview of AI and machine learning and see how they can improve your data science work
  • Learn how to present your data clearly and articulately

This Superstream is for you because...

  • You want to learn how data science works and understand its impacts, whether you’re swimming in data or just dipping in a toe.
  • You need to know the trends in data workflows, techniques, and tools.
  • You’re interested in learning the role AI can play in your data analysis and want to find out where to start.
  • You want to learn how to best present your data to outside stakeholders.


  • Come with your questions
  • Have a pen and paper handy to capture notes, insights, and inspiration

Recommend follow-up:

About your host

  • Alistair Croll is a best-selling author specializing in technology and business strategy. He cofounded Coradiant (acquired by BMC in 2011) and helped launch Rednod, CloudOps, Bitcurrent, Year One Labs, and other early-stage companies. He works with startups on business acceleration and advises companies on innovation and technology. Alistair tries to mitigate chronic ADD by writing about far too many things at Solve For Interesting.


The timeframes are only estimates and may vary according to how the class is progressing


Alistair Croll: Introduction (5 minutes) - 9:00am PT | 12:00pm ET | 5:00pm UTC/GMT

  • Alistair Croll welcomes you to the Strata Data Superstream.

Keynote (45 minutes) - 9:05am PT | 12:05pm ET | 5:05pm UTC/GMT

  • Break (10 minutes)

Tristan Handy: The Modern Data Stack—Past, Present, and Future (50 minutes) - 10:00am PT | 1:00pm ET | 6:00pm UTC/GMT

  • Data products have drawn a fantastic amount of attention, capital, and traction over the past decade. Big trends have played out during that time, including the shift toward horizontal tooling, the rise of SQL, and the empowerment of the data analyst. The net result of these trends has been increasingly empowered organizations staffed by technical-business hybrids, working with state-of-the-art horizontal tooling that all speaks SQL. Compared with where we were in 2010, it’s a great world to live in, but there are still huge problems to solve. Tristan Handy digs into the data problems he’s most fascinated with today, what he’s seeing that gets him excited, and where he thinks things might go from here.

  • Tristan Handy is the founder and CEO of Fishtown Analytics, a Philadelphia startup pioneering the practice of modern analytics engineering. Over 3,000 companies—including JetBlue, HubSpot, GitLab, and the ACLU—use Fishtown’s product, dbt, to organize, catalog, and distill knowledge from the data in their data warehouses. Tristan has been working in data for two decades in both in-house and consulting roles with both large enterprises and small startups.

  • Break (10 minutes)

Ayodele Odubela: Demystifying Machine Learning (50 minutes) - 11:00am PT | 2:00pm ET | 7:00pm UTC/GMT

  • For most, machine learning remains an enigma. But really it’s just a tool to predict events and understand patterns that exist around us. Ayodele Odubela walks you through the basics of machine learning and shows you how to get started using Python. You’ll learn the difference between machine learning and AI, how to apply ML to your projects, some of the math behind ML, and how to evaluate ML models to determine whether or not to use them for decision making.

  • Ayodele Odubela is the founder and CEO of FullyConnected, a platform for reducing the barrier to entry for Black professionals in ML/AI. Ayodele’s passionate about using tech to improve the lives of marginalized people. She earned a master's degree in data science after transitioning from social media marketing. Over her career, she's created algorithms that predict consumer segment movement, goals in hockey, and the location of firearms using radio frequency sensors.

  • Break (10 minutes)

Kristi Pelzel: The Art of Data Storytelling (50 minutes) - 12:00pm PT | 3:00pm ET | 8:00pm UTC/GMT

  • Data visualization is about communicating the substance of your metrics in a visual way. Storytelling with data differs from data visualization because it requires communicators to offer a larger, holistic view of their message. Join Kristi Pelzel to learn an approach to visualizing data that goes beyond statistics, gathering, cleaning, and analyzing to factor in the fundamental laws of human thinking, artistic design, and storytelling. You’ll discover how to best use “human thinking” and storytelling, choose the best visuals, remove clutter, design for attention, and think like a designer. Plus, you’ll practice drawing a three-part story on paper using an example data visualization and leave with a design cheat sheet that will help you connect with resources after the course is through.

  • Kristi Pelzel is the senior director of global communications and international correspondent for Today News Africa, based in Washington, DC. Her expertise spans broadcast, digital, and social media communications, nested with policy, research, and analysis. A member of the National Press Club, she holds a BA from the Academy of Art University, San Francisco, and an MA from Georgetown University.

Alistair Croll: Closing Remarks (10 minutes) - 12:50pm PT | 3:50pm ET | 8:50pm UTC/GMT

  • Alistair Croll closes out today’s event.

Upcoming Strata Data Superstream events:

  • Creating Data-Intensive Applications - May 4, 2021
  • Data Warehouses, Data Lakes, and Data Lakehouses - August 10, 2021
  • Business Analysis - November 9, 2021