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Virginia Backaitis News & Analysis

Will SAP HANA + Birst Blow Salesforce and Oracle Analytics Away?

2014-09-October-jet-Pack.jpgSalesforce boss Mark Benioff better have a pretty remarkable rabbit in his hat next week when he makes a much anticipated announcement about how his company will deliver big data analytics in the cloud. If not, Birst and SAP have just partnered to steal his thunder.

Cloudera + Teradata = Big Data Love?

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Hadoop may make many promises, but Teradata delivers solutions that enterprises trust.

We’re not saying this to ruffle any feathers because it isn’t an either or game. Every now and then we see headlines that say things like “Cloudera Declares End Of Data Warehousing Era” or see pictures of tombstones with RDBMS written on them, but the reality is that a good many of Teradata’s  users ignore  them or figure that Teradata will deliver big data capabilities, in a palatable doses, when the time is right.

And that’s essentially what Teradata and Hadoop pioneer Cloudera are banging the drums about this morning as they announce an expanded partnership around technology integration, sales and support. In other words, the two companies will work together to integrate Teradata’s integrated data warehouse and Cloudera’s enterprise data hub so that customers can work with multiple data sources (Cloudera’s Enterprise Data Hub being one of them) through the Teradata Unified Data Architecture (TDA).

This means that not only will Teradata customers be able to “buy” Cloudera’s products and services from Teradata, but that they’ll be tuned to work together and mutually supported.

Syncplicity Defines File Sharing Success [Video]

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How do software vendors measure success? It depends whom you ask. Sales managers will brag about record-breaking quarters. CFOs will extol big bottom lines. Product development managers will rave about functions and features.

Jeetu Patel, general manager of EMC Syncplicity, has an entirely different answer. “Engagement,” he said. “Deep user engagement is our first and our most important metric,” he says. He’s deliberate as he speaks. “Syncplicity is not interested in selling shelfware.”

Why Alteryx Won a Whopping $60M in New Funding

Data is the currency of today’s business world, when it’s leveraged to the hilt it can separate winners from losers when all else is equal. And even when it’s not.

We’re moving into a new world in which how a company uses its information may impact the bottom line as much as the product itself.

The folks at data-blending and analytics startup Alteryx know this, so they’ve built data blending and predictive analytics tools to help their customers leverage their data to a hilt. And you won’t have to be a data scientist or a know-it-all to blow someone like Mad Money’s Jim Kramer away. Alteryx democratizes big data.

Couchbase Claims It'll Lead the NoSQL Market by 2015

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Don’t tell Oracle's Larry Ellison, but NoSQL databases are the future of the enterprise. Yesterday’s databases weren’t built to handle today’s avalanches of data streaming from social, mobile, web transactions, the Internet of Things and God knows what’s next.

And Couchbase will be the NoSQL database that enterprises who are serious about winning the future will choose, according to Bob Wiederhold, CEO of Couchbase. He said that NoSQL databases have gone through an evolution that began four or five years ago when developers discovered and downloaded technologies like MongoDB to play with at home.

“They liked the ease of development, so they brought them to work and built lightweight applications,” he added.

This was an important period in NoSQL adoption, he continued. It set the stage for 2013 when enterprises decided that NoSQL was ready for prime time and that it could be used for mission critical applications.

“This is when Couchbase took off as company,” he said. “It’s when companies like AT&T, Walmart and eBay began to rely on us, the enterprise NoSQL leader for running high performance mission critical applications."

Is it the Market or is it Box? More IPO Woes

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Everyone from Bloomberg to the Wall Street Journal to TechCrunch is reporting that Box has delayed its initial public offering (IPO), yet again. Most cite market volatility as the reason.

It’s the same rationale the company has (reportedly) used in the past, though we don’t know for sure because at this stage of the game Box isn’t offering much more than boilerplate answers like, “Our plan continues to go public when it makes the most sense for Box and the market. As always, investing in our customers, technology and future growth remains our top priority.”

Gartner MQ for ECM: Why the Leaders Stand Out

It’s not unusual for an analyst to describe Enterprise Content Management as a mature technology. Or even to go so far as to call it “boring,” as analyst Alan Pelz-Sharpe did a few years ago when he was employed by the Real Story Group.

And he meant it in a good way. For many years ECM systems were huge headaches that seldom delivered as promised and now, for the most part, they do. The basic requirements, as you’ll see as you read on, are practically a given.

But as new technologies emerge and the way people work changes, so must the solutions that ECM vendors deliver. While Social was brought into the mix a few years ago, the direction now is toward “content in context” which means that user experiences will be personalized according to individual needs. Gartner said that by 2017 as much half of all business content will be nontextual, which will necessitate that analytics be part of content management.

In addition Gartner sees the requirements of an ECM solution evolving from “the right information, to the right person, in the right format, at the right time, on the right devices" to include the context of a particular business process.

It’s worth noting too that the ECM market grew 8.6 percent in 2013 meaning that it is continuing to bring new value and win interest from new customers.

Are Analytics Firms Undervalued? TIBCO Sells at a Premium

Stop the presses -- or at least the rumors. We now know who will buy middleware analytics provider Tibco: Vista Equity Partners, a private equity firm.

At $4.3 billion, it is the largest tech buyout this year.

And worried Tibco shareholders who have seen their investments slide by as much as 23 percent in the past year, should be relieved to cut their losses a bit. In the last week the stock was trading as high as $20 per share. Vista is paying $24.
 

Is Box Too Distracted to Care About Deal with Oracle?

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You’d think that Aaron Levie would find it significant that Oracle has announced the integration of its Marketing Cloud with Box. But we haven’t heard a peep about it from Levie or anyone else at his Los Altos, Calif.-based Enterprise File Sync and Share (EFSS) start-up.

Box didn’t put out a press release about the “expanded” relationship, which it did in the past with other big deals like Samsung and AT&T.

Box responded to our request for comment late today by stressing how excited everyone was about the deal, despite the notable lack of publicity about it.

The company’s communications team added that Niall Wall, senior vice president of business development at Box, had included a supporting quote in Oracle’s press release — which noted that he, too, was "excited to extend our partnership with Oracle.”

Just How Badly Does Microsoft Want Your OneDrive Biz?

While you were out last Friday night -- having drinks, watching your local high school team play football under the lights, dancing or enjoying a quiet dinner with that special someone -- Douglas Pearce was in his office at Microsoft penning a blog post.

Even the he knew the timing was weird.

“While it might seem strange to announce new features on a Friday evening,” Pearce, the group program manager for OneDrive, wrote in the company’s blog, “we’ve been listening to the commentary about storage on the new iPhones released today and we wanted to get you more storage right away.”

Pivotal Revs Its Big Data Play, But There's a Better Story

2014-23-September-Chunyun.jpgWe’ve all heard an earful about the emergence of computing’s third platform, built for a world in which big data, mobile, social, analytics and cloud change the way we live and work. And while, for many of us, the actual impact thus far has been around shopping, dating, getting movie or music suggestions, there are real world examples that are absolute game-changers for large segments of the population.

And Pivotal’s big data platform and Pivotal GemFire, in particular, is powering some of them.

Pivotal GemFire, for anyone who needs a refresher, is a distributed in-memory data management solution for enterprises creating high-scale custom applications.
 

Changes Ahead for EMC's Documentum, Syncplicity, AirWatch?

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that EMC is weighing its options for a merger or the possibility of being acquired. Though seemingly serious conversations about an HP/EMC merger have fallen apart, according to the New York Times, some industry-watchers suspect they could be revived.

EMC is also reportedly talking with Dell which might be interested in buying pieces of the storage giant. Analysts have told Market Watch that Cisco or Oracle may be potential suitors as well.

Does Cloudera Need to Cool It?

2014-22-September-Elephant-Fight.jpgA staple gun or roll of masking tape might come in handy today when Amr Awadallah walks in through his company’s doors. The CTO and co-founder of Hadoop platform provider Cloudera mouthed off about the competition to the European press late last week inspiring tweets like “Elephant fight!” The elephant reference, for anyone who may not know, refers to the symbol used for Apache Open Source Hadoop.

Gimme a Break, Larry Ellison's Still Running Oracle

2014-19-September-Larry-Ellison.jpgLarry Ellison got just what he wanted. Instead of everyone criticizing his leadership when Oracle reported that it had missed both its sales and profit estimates yesterday, they’re talking about his heralded career and how he just ceded his CEO position to become the company’s CTO.

Not only is he being called a visionary and one of Technology’s foremost luminaries, but a CEO who has planned well for his succession.

All of this is true, of course, but so is something else.

The only thing that actually has changed at Oracle is a few job titles.

Want proof?

Dirty Data Be Gone, Check Out CrowdFlower

2014-17-September-Dirty-Cat.jpgTalk to one of those high priced data scientists about their data and you’ll see something quite astounding: they really, really care about it. It’s almost as if it was a garden they were tending or a scruffy, homeless kitten they’ve taken in to raise.

While the sentiment might initially sound ridiculous, it isn’t. Data fuels their work (and the insights that inform yours). And if you pair dirty or poorly labeled data with the best trained models and finest algorithms, it’s a waste of time and energy. The knowledge gleaned will be worthless, at best.

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