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Bi News & Analysis

Money and More: It Pays To Be a B*DAS* Developer [Infographic]

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With big data and analytics being all the rage, hiring a Big Data, Analytics Software (thus the term B*DAS*) developer is no easy task. “Developers are the kingmakers,” explained Matt Asay, vice president of mobile at Adobe. At the time he said that, he was working at MongoDB.

And the job rate for this kind of worker is growing faster than the amount of qualified talent.

This is a problem for employers because 3rd platform developers write the software that can catapult them to new heights or let them float into oblivion. And we’re not talking only startups, but also big companies like Nordstrom, Cigna, FICO and even the Federal Government. They need these kinds of workers, too.

As a result, businesses are pulling out all the stops to attract developers. But before they can do that, they need to discover who these developers are and how they prefer to work. Otherwise, there’s no point in putting a perks package together.

Your Data Is a Mess: Investors Pile Funds into BI

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Investors have been piling money into business intelligence (BI) startups in recent weeks, suggesting their next-generation approach to BI is gaining momentum.

Most recently, San Francisco-based Birst raised another $65 million in funding. In addition, Santa Cruz, Calif.-based Looker raised $30 million in Series B funding.

Make Room for Gartner's BI and Analytics Platforms MQ Leaders

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Twenty four is a crowd -- yet that’s how many vendors made it into Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Business Intelligence (BI) and Analytics circa 2015.

For enterprises that are shopping for BI and Analytics solutions, choice may seem like a good thing until you consider what evaluating that many vendors might look like -- most of us wouldn’t even consider trying on 24 pairs of jeans.

Ready for a Bite? First Fruits of IBM-Twitter Deal Ripen

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IBM and Twitter announced the first concrete results from a five-month-old partnership.

The new offerings include a number of cloud-based services that mine Twitter data, as well as new developer tools.

IBM is running the new data analytics services on top of its artificial intelligence technology and IBM BigInsights for Apache Hadoop, one of its big data platforms.

The goal is to help enterprises not just identify relevant Twitter data, but also exploit it.

Microsoft's New BI Tool Plays Nice, Even With 3rd Party Vendors

If you haven’t at least experimented with Microsoft’s business intelligence visualization tool Power BI yet, now there are no excuses left.

Microsoft made many announcements during its Convergence conference in Atlanta this morning. They included news that the preview of Power BI is now being released worldwide to 140 markets.

How Do You Evaluate Your Digital Analytics Team's Success?

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There’s certainly a school of thought that ties digital analytics team success to the bottom line…did you make money, did you save money?

And then there is the customer satisfaction perspective…do your stakeholders think that you provided good service?

Or, you can make it personal, and create performance metrics as a target to be measured against during annual review.

Is there a right answer?  

Splunk Brings Operational Insights to Main Street

To some of us, the mere idea of gleaning insights from operational and machine data seems baffling — like something that only large enterprises with big bucks and sophisticated IT pros have the resources to do. This leaves the rest of us straining our eyes and brains, examining and analyzing log files to anticipate and solve problems. 

Why Salesforce Analytics Cloud May Be a Big Deal

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One of the big myths around business analytics, at this point in time, is that it's democratized. That the average business user can grab a dataset, ask questions around it, and glean the insights needed to take informed action on the spur of the moment, regardless of where they are and what kind of screen they‘re staring at.

The next time someone tells you this, say “show me.” Odds are that you’ll discover that when they say “average,” it doesn’t include most of us. And that “democratized” refers to a wider variety of data workers, meaning that they don’t necessarily have to be data scientists, statistical whizzes or know how to work with R, but it’s a pretty good bet that terms like “data profiling,” "data modeling” and Analytics will show up on their resumes more often than “exceeded quota.” 

NetScout Responds to Court Order, Revises Complaint Against Gartner

NetScout Systems' complaint against Gartner just got a little thinner — and a lot less entertaining for anyone who enjoys perusing page upon page of "prejudicial, immaterial, unnecessary" and improper allegations that "attempt to plead evidence rather than facts."

Connecticut Superior Court Judge Charles T. Lee ordered NetScout attorneys to revise the complaint to eliminate what Gartner's team had characterized as "references to law that does not apply; industries that are not involved; historical scandals that are irrelevant; and nonparties having nothing to do with the dispute."

The revised complaint, filed this week, is a mere 49 pages — nine pages lighter than the original one Westford, Mass.-based NetScout filed last August against Stamford, Conn.-based Gartner.

MapR Closes the Big Data-to-Action Loop

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Everyone knows the time from data-to-action can be critical to winning business, regardless of the variety, velocity, variability and volume of information involved in the process.

And in a world where data is created not only at a pace that is challenging to even ponder but also streams from the Internet of Things (IoT), data lakes are so broad and so deep that making sense of anything in them in real time and reacting accordingly seems unfathomable. Add globally distributed data, and forget about it.

Or maybe not. Because MapR’s latest release, which includes Hadoop has been built for the real time, data-centric enterprise. It leverages table replication features designed to extend access to “big and fast” data enabling multiple instances to be updated in different locations, with all the changes synchronized across them.

“Real time is not just about running a query. It’s also about how and where and how quickly information is processed and the action an organization is going to take,” said Jack Norris, the MapR's chief marketing officer.

Manufacturers Stand on the Cusp of a Big Data Boom

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Despite what the hype surrounding big data might lead you to believe, the widespread existence of data is not a new concept, nor has there been some sudden "aha!" moment when decision makers realized that data could be put to use to better their businesses. Data -- and lots of it -- has always existed, and companies have always understood that it has value. There just wasn’t a whole lot they could do about it.

That is, of course, until the development of so-called big data technologies -- a wave of new tools that make it possible to store, integrate and analyze data more efficiently and affordably than ever before. These technologies have transformed data analysis from a cost-cutting mechanism into a primary vehicle through which companies make money and find new revenue streams.

When people talk about the power of big data, they’re really talking about this transformation. And perhaps no industry is a better embodiment of it than manufacturing.

Hitachi Buys Pentaho to Build Internet of Things That Matter

Managing all the data generated by the Internet of Things (IoT) is both a daunting task and a tremendous opportunity. The company that does it well, first, and for the right reasons could have an unprecedented ability to impact the world in a positive way.

Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) wants to be that company and it believes that adding big data analytics capabilities to its portfolio is key. So it goes to follow that today it announced its intent to acquire BI vendor Pentaho, which is best known for its big data platform that simplifies preparing and blending all types of data and includes a spectrum of tools that enable users to easily analyze, visualize, explore, report insights and predict outcomes.

Big Data Skills Shortage? Not on MapR's (Pre-IPO) Watch

One of the biggest obstacles to the adoption of Hadoop in the enterprise is the shortage of professionals trained to work with it. According to job posting aggregator Indeed.com, there’s been as much as a 225,000 percent growth in demand for the big data crushing skill since 2009 — and no one is schooling engineers at that rate.

Learning Hadoop, until recently, has been something that passionate, self-directed computer engineers did alone, at leading edge technology-oriented schools like Stanford or as part of the Apache Hadoop community. Some chose a slightly easier way, by paying for training from individual distro vendors like Cloudera, Hortonworks and MapR or a few third-party providers.

While it’s not impossible to find “free,” self-paced training  online, most of it is delivered via a freemium model and doesn’t cover the material broadly or deeply enough to pass certification exams. That kind of training often costs hundreds or thousands.

Up until today, that is. This morning big data software and Hadoop distro provider MapR announced free Hadoop On-Demand Training for developers, analysts and administrators that meets certification requirements.

Microsoft's Play to Rule Analytics' 3rd Wave

One billion Excel users may not sleep tonight. It won’t be a problem that keeps them awake, but a new toy. And, get this -- it’s free.

Today Microsoft introduces a new Power BI -- a service that helps users bring data in, wring value out and visualize the results. It’s geared toward line of business users, not data geeks, and may be pivotal in helping enterprises usher in a “data culture.”

Some may see this new data culture as Microsoft’s birthright (sort of) given that 1 billion workers use Excel today and that analytics is a natural progression. But Microsoft certainly isn’t taking anything for granted. “We’re lowering the barriers to entry by removing the friction and greasing the gears,” said James Phillips, general manager, data experiences at Microsoft. 

No Data Butler? Alteryx's Newest Release Can Help

Let’s face it. Most line of business users don’t have a data scientist at their beck and call or even a geek from IT for that matter. So when a marketing manager or finance executive needs to make a decision in short order, he often has to do so based on a small fraction of the available information, go with his gut or miss the opportunity.

“It can take days, weeks or months before IT can provide it,” said Bob Laurent, director of product marketing at Alteryx, a data blending and data analytics platform.

That’s a problem because we live in an increasingly real time world.

That same world, mind you, is rich and overflowing with data — mobile, social, transactional, analytical, Internet of Things … we could go on. And it’s not just that, but today’s consumers don’t respond well to marketers (or anyone else) who misfires. They expect personalization and for the other party to be well informed.

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