Accelerate Your Data Science with Building Blocks

RapidMiner Studio has the special ability to help speed up your analytics and they’re called Building Blocks!  Building Blocks can be considered a “Pro/Power User” feature but it’s available to everyone, you just need to know how to take advantage of it.

What are building blocks? They are pre-built processes encapsulated inside a Subprocess operator and saved to your Building Block menu. At any time, you can just “right click” in the RapidMiner Studio design canvas and select “Insert Building Block” and then select the Building Block you want to insert.  Once you do that, the Subprocess drops into the design canvas and you can then use it for your process design.

Below is a screen shot of my personal list of Building Blocks. I use these Building Blocks all the time in my day to day work at RapidMiner and they speed up my analysis.

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After I insert the “Determine Influence Factors” Building Block, I’m presented with a Subprocess operator.

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If I double click it, it brings me to nested level where all my Weighting operators are. You can see that they are wired to receive input and wired to pass output through. When you drop in the Building Block, whatever is inside the Subprocess comes pre-wired IF you saved it that way.

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Once its dropped in, you just need to attach your upstream data and hit the play button!

Sharing your Building Blocks

What I really like about Building Blocks is that I can build complex processes, save them, and then insert them into the process right anyway. I typically do this for Sentiment Analysis, reading in Financial index data (i.e. S&P500), and sampling data by weights. But what about sharing them with my colleagues and community?

That’s easy! You just need to know where RapidMiner stores them.

RapidMiner Studio stores all your custom made Building Blocks in your /.RapidMiner/ folder with the extension “.buildingblock” You can easily attach them an email and share with your team mates or outside parties, thereby turbo charging your analysis time.

In fact, we started sharing our Building Blocks the community. The Building Block community is a great place for all community members  who want to share a cool Building Block they wrote. Check out the ones we prepopulated already!