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December 18, 2012
Self-service analytics – the ability for non-technical business users to intuitively perform ad hoc reporting and analysis on business data residing in corporate databases and spreadsheets has been a staple of BI and business analytics tools for years. However, these traditional tools simply don’t work against the new breed of “big data” platforms such as Hadoop and NoSQL databases, which have rejected the traditional relational SQL interface in return for massive scalability and the flexibility to store unstructured data. Meanwhile, some new specialized but limited big data analytics tools have been released to the market, that are designed specifically to work with the new breed of big data platforms. So what are the questions you should be asking when looking to provide your data analysts and business users easy self-service analytics for big data platforms such as Hadoop, MongoDB, Cassandra or HBase? 1.Do you have more than one kind of big data store, for example Hadoop as well as HBase, MongoDB or Cassandra? A: Chances are you do, or will in the future, to take advantage of the relative strengths of these big data platforms. Consider the fact that most...
December 14, 2012
Last week I visited our European team and met with customers, prospects, press and analysts to learn and talk about big data. My week in Europe confirmed my belief that we are definitely in the right business at the most exciting possible time. In a region that is rife with economic challenges, my conversations were optimistic and inspiring. Seasoned industry people will be familiar with Geoffrey Moore’s famous curve showing the phases of technology adoption, in which the toughest challenge is ‘crossing the chasm between the early adopters and the early majority. With some technologies, this journey can take years. Many never make it across. After speaking to me and executives from MapR, Cloudera and ParAccel, Brian McKenna of Computer Weekly proposes in his article “ Big data analytics set to confound conventional adoption curve in UK ” that big data adoption is moving relatively fast in the UK and Europe. The UK industry analyst Clive Longbottom, who I met with, reinforced this saying that big data adoption in the UK was only three months behind the US. Of course the real proof is in what customers are doing. During...
November 30, 2012
With the recent announcement of Impala, also known as Cloudera Enterprise RTQ (Real Time Query), I expect the interest in and adoption of Hadoop to go from merely intense to crazy. We applaud Cloudera’s investment in creating Impala as it moves Hadoop a huge step forward in making Hadoop accessible using existing BI tools. What is Impala? Simply put, it enables all of the SQL-based BI and business analytics tools that have been built over the past couple of decades to now work directly on top of Hadoop, providing interactive response times not previously attainable with Hadoop, and many times faster than Hive, the existing SQL-like alternative. And Impala provides pretty complete SQL support, including join and aggregate functions – must-have functions for analytics. For enterprises this analytic query speed and expressiveness is huge – it means they are now much less likely to need to extract data out of Hadoop and load it into a data mart or warehouse for interactive visualization. Instead they can use their favorite business analytics tool directly against Hadoop. But of course only Pentaho provides the integrated end-to-end data integration and business analytics capability...