Book Image

Practical Predictive Analytics

By : Ralph Winters
Book Image

Practical Predictive Analytics

By: Ralph Winters

Overview of this book

This is the go-to book for anyone interested in the steps needed to develop predictive analytics solutions with examples from the world of marketing, healthcare, and retail. We'll get started with a brief history of predictive analytics and learn about different roles and functions people play within a predictive analytics project. Then, we will learn about various ways of installing R along with their pros and cons, combined with a step-by-step installation of RStudio, and a description of the best practices for organizing your projects. On completing the installation, we will begin to acquire the skills necessary to input, clean, and prepare your data for modeling. We will learn the six specific steps needed to implement and successfully deploy a predictive model starting from asking the right questions through model development and ending with deploying your predictive model into production. We will learn why collaboration is important and how agile iterative modeling cycles can increase your chances of developing and deploying the best successful model. We will continue your journey in the cloud by extending your skill set by learning about Databricks and SparkR, which allow you to develop predictive models on vast gigabytes of data.
Table of Contents (19 chapters)
Title Page
About the Author
About the Reviewers
Customer Feedback

Chapter 2. The Modeling Process

Remember that all models are wrong; the practical question is how wrong do they have to be to not be useful.

-George Edward Pelham Box

Today, we are at a juncture in which many different types of skill sets are needed to participate in predictive analytics projects. Once, this was the pure domain of statisticians, programmers, and business analysts. Now, the roles have expanded to include visualization experts, data storage experts, and other types of specialists. Yet, so many are unfamiliar with an understanding of how predictive analytics projects can be structured. This lack of structure can be inhibited by several factors. Often there is a lack of understanding of the critical parts of a business problem, and a model is developed much too early. Alternatively, a formal methodology may be put off to the future, in favor of a quick solution.

In this chapter, we will start by discussing the advantages of using structured analytics methodologies. Methodologies...