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Business Intelligence News & Analysis

Google, IBM and the Battle for Automated Customer Experience

Google has pinned its acquisition strategy on data, analytics, robotics and artificial intelligence (AI). IBM is very focused in data analysis and levering its own AI technology, Watson, into other areas. All signs point to a looming battle between these two technology giants.

We Know What You'll Be Eating During the Super Bowl [Infographic]

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Hunches are good, but data is better, so says best-selling author Dan Pink. And in a world of big data and sophisticated analytics, why would you even want to go on a hunch, especially when there’s so much great data available?

Maybe because, in this day and age, huge volumes of variable data come at you with such great velocity that it’s difficult to get an accurate picture of what it’s telling you. Especially if it’s all loaded into a spreadsheet.

And, even if you’re OK with jockeying spreadsheets, chances are the people with whom you want to have conversations and collaborate about the data are not. When they see you coming at them with an Excel file, they’ll run the other way. Send the e-mail with an .xls attachment and they may “accidentally” delete without reading …

 

Is There a Theme to Google's Latest Acquisition Binge?

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Boston Dynamics, Nest and DeepMind. In the past month, Google has gone on yet another acquisition binge, spending at least $4 billion on a trio of startups that seem only loosely connected — robotics, home automation and artificial intelligence, respectively. Is there a central strategy, and what does it mean to the future of Google, the Internet of Things and Customer Experience?

Zettaset and MicroStrategy Deliver Secure, Big Data Insight #MSTRworld

hadoopornohadoop.jpgOK, so it’s not popular to say so, but Hadoop has some real big problems. Among them, the security vulnerabilities that exist “at every layer of the stack,” according to a blog post penned by Gartner analyst Merv Adrian.

So it goes to follow that the enterprises who turn a blind eye to those vulnerabilities might be headed for trouble.

That being said, companies who fail to identify data-driven insights and make decisions around them could be digging their own graves.

Altiscale has the RX for Hadoop Headaches

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Hadoop isn’t easy.

Sure, there are vendors out there who will tell you that it is ... Just take this course or that exam. Work with us side-by-side as we “elephantize” your Enterprise, and presto you’re a pro.

No, you’re not.

Not yet, anyway. Regardless of what any of the 268,000 hits you get when you enter the term “Hadoop training” into Google happens to say. And it’s not that these folks are trying to mislead you — they’ve put their heads and their hearts into encouraging and enabling the widespread adoption of Hadoop.

It’s just that becoming a master at Hadoop (Wikipedia definition: open-source software framework for storage and large scale processing of data-sets on clusters of commodity hardware) takes time, experience, trial and error and enough opportunities to generate a continuous record of success. But that’s not all. As a new technology with a vibrant Open Source community, Hadoop keeps changing, so it’s hard to keep up.

Forrester Names SAP, IBM, SAS, Microsoft Tops in BI

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The functions on business intelligence (BI) suites may have become standardized. But enterprises are still prepared to pay big bucks for products that will give them best-in-class data and insights.

In fact, Forrester maintains, enterprises are competing over the quality of the insights they can draw from their data and the customer experience they can offer customers or clients. The other key differentiator is the ability of those BI suites to integrate with legacy enterprise systems.

Polished! Documentum's Golden Crown is Shining

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EMC Documentum has worn a crown of gold in the enterprise content management (ECM) world for quite a long time. In fact, it’s hard to remember a year (if there was one) when analysts at Gartner, Ovum and Forrester didn’t all call the company a leader.

And a leader, it should be noted, is different from a strong performer, a challenger, a contender and a visionary, all terms the analysts apply to levels below "leader." A leader is a product that can already do it all (or at least the important parts) and that analysts recommend, almost without hesitation — a product like EMC Documentum.

EMC IIG Just Built Something Brand Spankin' New

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Walk into an enterprise conference room, say the word “archive” and everyone will duck out the door — unless they're lawyers, policymakers or paranoid. OK, maybe a few anal-retentive folks from IT and records management will stick around, especially if there’s a new product or service being introduced or rumors of an investigation.

Though the latter is the last thing anyone wants, it may be the only times these hard-working, too often unsung, archiving heroes see the fruits of their labor pay off.

After all, it’s because of their hard work that the CEOs who employ them can locate and easily access the critical documents and data they need to keep themselves and their companies out of trouble should questions of negligence, misrepresentation or wrong doing ever arrive.

So let's talk about what EMC is doing about this.

Big Data Bits: SAP HANA Propositions IBM Watson + 3 Hookups + 1 Offshoot

Big Data Bits: SAP HANA Propositions IBM Watson + 3 Hookups + 1 OffshootNot everyone’s hot and bothered by IBM Watson, but SAP’s HANA sure is.

The love child of SAP Chairman Hasso Plattner has taken to the company blog to politely coax IBM Ginni Rometty’s Jeopardy-winning cog (this is the term that IBM is beginning to use for cognitive technology) into a relationship.

“Isn't it a no brainer to get Watson to work on HANA?” writes Vijay Vijayasankar, Global Vice President at SAP Labs.

Privacy is Overrated: Ask Your Customers and They Will Tell

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Guess what? New research from IBM shows customers are willing to share their personal information, especially if they get something in return.

Excuse us while we yawn ... But doesn't it seem like anyone who ever signed up for something as innocuous as a store loyalty card could explain the same thing? How many people registered for a website during the heady dot-com days, just to get a free water bottle?

And don't even get us started on the phenomenon of too much information on social media, where everyone shares just about everything, for nothing but 15 seconds of fame in return.

So let's overlook the obvious, and see if there are any deeper insights in the research IBM released this week at the National Retail Federation's 103rd Annual Convention and EXPO in New York City.

Will IBM's Watson Change the Customer Experience? #NRF14

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IBM CEO Ginni Rometty took the Watson story on the road yesterday when she addressed a crowd of 35.000 at the National Retail Federation's 103rd Annual Convention and EXPO in New York City. Like almost every tech CEO who has stood on a stage in the past thirty-six months, she opened with the “social, mobile, big data, cloud” mantra, calling data the “next generation's natural resource."

But as she spoke, it became clear that Rometty had something to offer that other CEO’s did not, IBM Watson, the technology that beat Ken Jennings at Jeopardy. Until recently many of us have thought of Watson as an Encyclopedia and Search Engine on steroids, but it’s actually much more than that. 

IBM's Billion Dollar Bet on Watson is a Big Deal - And it Could Work

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Yes, yes, we’ve read the Wall St. Journal and are well aware of the fact that IBM Watson’s leaked business results fall short of expectations. So what? 

If Watson is the cognitive computing success we think it could be that won’t matter ten years from now. By then Watson will have been instrumental in teaching Cleveland Clinic medical students to practice the art of medicine (Watson will be handling much of the research and science) and to save more lives. It will have helped pharmaceutical and medical researchers bring new, safe therapies to market faster.

It will have helped retailers and service providers make suggestions that are actually relevant, by learning from what you do and do not like and get it right much better than today’s machine learning solutions. And it will enable customer support services to actually be helpful.

Heck, I might not even need to read the microscopic-sized serial numbers off of my devices when they break down. Watson will already know the make, model  and other minutia I’m now asked for when I cry out for help.

Forget Jeopardy - IBM's Watson Has an Enterprise Play, $1 Billion and a Place in NYC

IBM Watson - Big DataKen Jennings, fear not -- IBM’s Watson no longer has eyes for you.

Later today, Big Blue will announce the launch of its Watson Group, a big data analytics unit that will provide products and services geared toward the enterprise, researchers, academics and who knows who else. 

Cloudera's Enterprise Data Hub Rises to the Call of Amazon's AWS

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Someone joked at Strata and Hadoop World earlier this year that Cloudera was ahead of its time when it chose its name. “You should have called it On-premise era,” said the would-be comedian, referring to the fact that Cloudera and most other enterprise-grade Hadoop distros live in the data center.

That joke becomes a little less funny today when Cloudera announces that its Enterprise Data Platform is now certified and available for deployment on the Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud.

4 Enterprise Software Drivers For 2014

Enterprise software spending will recover next year driven by the combined forces of cloud computing, data management, mobile applications and social business, according to new research from Gartner. 

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