Big Data Success Story: Airbnb, the Rentals Listing Site

Posted in big data, Databases


The airbnb website puts together travellers with people who have space to rent. The spaces, according to airbnb, can be anything from “futons on the floor to castles on the hilltop.”

Airbnb noticed over time that some space listings attracted more clicks than others for very similar spaces. airbnb wanted to make all their listings equally attractive to increase clicks (and thereby, of course, their revenues. To their credit, they did not try to spin the reason into something altruistic like, “increasing the world’s mobility”).

They studied visitor behaviour, pinpointing popular listings, then studying characteristics of each of those listings and looking for a common factor. They found it: all those listings had great photographs attached. They also found that the non-popular listings had no photographs or no compelling photographs to speak of. So they began offering space owners a tool for getting free professional photo shoots of their spaces. Voila, this increased their number of bookings as well as love from space owners :)

The motto of the story is that you can pull interesting benefits out of your data. And don’t assume that your data has no tale to tell… it always does, and if you want to make it speak,  ask us by filling out the email form in the right column. Or if you would like to know more about our capabilities, go to the data analysis page on our main website. We look forward to hearing from you!

Big Data Analysis Identifies Entrepreneurs

Posted in Databases

young surprised businessman holding money

A venture capital company identifies entrepreneurs and offers them funding even before the entrepreneurs know they are entrepreneurs!

Imagine you are sitting on your front porch when a dump truck rolls up. It backs into your driveway and dumps a mountain of $100 bills onto it. Then the driver walks up to you and says, “The venture capital fund Bloomberg Beta has determined from data analysis that if you start a tech company, it’ll be a blast. Here’s $5 million to get it started.”

This isn’t a daydream, folks, it’s really happening. Bloomberg use data analysis technologies for mining tweets and information on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn to identify 1.5 million professionals connected with technology and startups. Then they selected those who:

  • Lived in the Bay Area or New York
  • Had worked at a startup
  • Had studied at a top university
  • Had worked in technology or business management

These filters threw up 350 individuals most likely to succeed if they started a tech venture. Bloomberg got in touch with them and started sending out the dump trucks mentioned earlier (well, sort of).

Wait a minute… is that a truck backing into your driveway?

Would you like to examine data to find the treasure in it? Look no further, message us here, NOW!




3D Printing of a 5-Storey House

Posted in CAD

Here’s the house:


3D printed 5 storey apartment building by WinSun Decoration Design Engineering Co, Shanghai, China (WinSun Co.)

It was made by WinSun WinSun Decoration Design Engineering Co, Shanghai, China using their massive (perhaps the largest in the world) 3D printer,  20 feet tall, 33 feet wide, and 132 feet long. One of the other great things about the building is that it was printed using recycled building materials!

Here’s a video of the process:

As engineers, we at TMG feel that building a printer of this size to print with a liquid cement-type material is not all that complicated, one reason being that the resolution of the printer need not be microscopic, another being that precision heating of the feed will likely not be necessary. But credit does go to Winsun for thinking of the idea first!

Big Data Success Story: Domino’s Pizza

Posted in Databases


Some years back, Domino’s decided to get feedback from their customers, then mine that data to improve revenues.

They put a survey on their website asking customers to rate their purchase. They also collected social media postings about them. The result: people were significantly disgruntled with their pizza, especially the crust and the sauce.

They then looked at the same data from a different angle: what should they do to win back customers? They used the results to modify their process and woohoo, sales went up by 9%!

A similar study of your data may lead to strategies that improve your performance, too. Interested to know if there is potential for this? Message us here for a discussion, maybe there’s gold in them thar data!

3D Printing in Space Has Arrived

Posted in CAD


Commander Barry Wilmore in the International Space Station with the 3D-printed wrench

Earlier in this blog we had mentioned how preparations were being made to enable 3D printing in space. 3D printing in space is now been there, done that. A small ratchet wrench has been successfully 3D printed at the International Space Station (ISS) during its Expedition #42.

The wrench was designed on earth at Marshall Space Flight Center  , NASA approved the design, the design data file was uploaded to the ISS and the wrench printed on a 3D printer on the ISS in less than four hours. Total time, start to finish: less than a week.

This is without a doubt faster and cheaper than making the wrench on earth and sending it up to the ISS by space shuttle!

As mentioned in other posts, TMG creates the files 3D printers need to create their objects, so if you need to 3D print something, TMG is one of the places that will create your printer files. Message us here to email our engineers to discuss your requirement.

Have a great 2015!

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