Bloor Group Offers Free Big Data Help for Sleepless BI Pros

Loraine Lawson
Slide Show

Big Data Analytics

The first steps toward achieving a lasting competitive edge with Big Data analytics.

Much of what I read and write about can be tied directly to supporting business intelligence. Data integration, eliminating information silos, data quality - they all form a foundation for ensuring BI works.


Technology leaders also spend a lot of time thinking, talking about and supporting BI efforts. When asked about their top 10 priorities for 2011, CIOs placed BI at number five, according to Gartner. And when it comes to investing in software, spending on BI was expected to top the list, beating out even collaboration survey, according to Forrester.


So, obviously, BI matters to IT and companies.


But what matters to actual BI practioners? After all, if you're going to support them, shouldn't you know about their needs?


There are five worries that keep BI professionals awake at night, according to Bob Zurek, vice president of product strategy for Latitude at Endeca:

  1. Performance questions, particularly in the face of Big Data.
  2. The speed (or, really, lack-thereof) of data integration.
  3. What to do with all this social data - another Big Data problem.
  4. The possibility of a crash. BI pros fear in-memory-based systems running out of memory or some sort of failure that will bring down their BI solution. They need systems designed with high availability and redundancy in mind, he adds.
  5. Agile BI, which is basically delivering analytics information in short, but frequent, bursts.


In the interest of better sleep for BI professionals, IT leaders might want to check out the Bloor Group's upcoming analyst briefings on Big Data and analytics. Looking at the write-ups, it strikes me as a good resource for addressing some of their worries, since it's not just about Big Data, but supporting the three "major dimensions" of Big Data: integration, real-time and multi-structured data.


The first briefing will focus on combining multicore processors and massively parallel software. It will feature Mark Madsen, an analyst with Third Nature. Pervasive Software will also talk about its TurboRush for Hive. You'll need to sign up ASAP, though - this event takes place tomorrow (Tuesday, Aug. 16) at 4 p.m., EDT, or 1 p.m. PDT. If you do miss it, it'll be archived in The Briefing Room under "Recent Episodes."


When it comes to their "social data anxiety," BI professionals might find some relief and answers during the Aug. 23 briefing, which will cover how to manage new data types, including data from social networks. Colin White of BI Research is the featured analyst, and will be joined by representatives from Aster Data.


The last briefing will deal with the speed of Big Data and looks like it'll also touch on the idea of agile BI, even if it doesn't use that term. Bill Inmon will discuss "time to insight" and why fast data is critical to successful analytics. He'll also look at how fast analytic databases are versus how fast they need to be. He'll be joined by SAND Technology, another massively parallel processing (MPP) vendor. You can tune into that briefing Tuesday, Aug. 30, again at 4 p.m. EDT/1 p.m. PDT.

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