SAP Allies with Esri to Run GIS in Real Time on HANA

Mike Vizard

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but that’s only true if it doesn’t take hours to actually process and render it.

In a move that will cut the amount of time it takes to process spatial data to a few minutes, SAP today announced it has partnered with Esri to bring the latter company’s portfolio of geographic information systems (GIS) and analytics applications to the SAP HANA in-memory computing platform.

Announced at the Esri International 2013 conference today, the alliance with Esri represents the addition of yet another data type to the SAP HANA ecosystem that can be processed in real time on top of the core SAP HANA engine.

According to David Jonker, director of Big Data strategy at SAP, an in-memory computing platform will allow spatial data to be rendered in real time versus the hours it currently takes to process that type of data on traditional disk-based systems. The end result, says Jonker, should be expanded usage of spatial data within business processes that organizations are usually trying to manage in real time.

While spatial data within GIS applications has been around for decades, the processing requirements associated with that class of data has limited the adoption of GIS. As the cost of in-memory computing continues to decline, however, the potential to include location information within almost any business process suddenly becomes a whole lot more feasible.


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