Welcome!

Containers Expo Blog Authors: Liz McMillan, Pat Romanski, Zakia Bouachraoui, Elizabeth White, Yeshim Deniz

Related Topics: Containers Expo Blog, Microservices Expo, Open Source Cloud, Agile Computing, @CloudExpo, @DXWorldExpo

Containers Expo Blog: Article

Analytics Can Change Your Business

Agile access to essential data sets is the key

According to the Professors Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfsson of MIT:

"Companies that inject Big Data and analytics into their operations show productivity rates and profitability that are 5% to 6% higher than those of their peers."

CIOs understand this opportunity and according to a 2012 survey of 2300 CIO by Gartner, Analytics is their number one technology priority.

Data is the critical success factor.  Because without data, there can be no analysis.

Data Virtualization as an Analytic Data Enabler
Data virtualization
can accelerate development of a new analytic or refinement an existing one.

With data virtualization you can easily:

  • Discover available data sources across and beyond the enterprise
  • Simplify access to required data sources, while complying with security and governance policies
  • Combine all the data required, physically, virtually or in a hybrid combination
  • Deliver the data to any number of analytic tools
  • Complete all these activities quickly and easily

One-off or Recurring
Data virtualization's support for analytics can scale from one-off projects, with one-time analytic sandboxes to on-going support of multiple analytic applications via an analytic data hub.

Analytic data hubs provide greater consistency across multiple analytic applications, faster time to solution due to data set reuse and more complete governance and control.

Upsell Analysis in Telecommunications
To identify upsell opportunities within their customer base, this cable company needed to combine data from multiple customer management and operations systems. Using Composite Software's data virtualization platform they quickly created new analytics driving $21M in additional revenue.

Product Optimization Analysis in On-line Video Games
To improve the player experience for new video games and thus drive additional sales, this on-line video entertainment company needed to combine data from big data sources tracking game usage, website traffic, sales data and more.   With data virtualization they identified product improvements which have leading to $9M in additional revenue.

Analytic Data Hub Design Guidance
Rick Sherman
, noted business intelligence and data management analyst, consultant and educator from Athena IT Solutions recently wrote a white paper on Analytic Data Hub design entitled Analytics Best Practices: The Analytical Hub.

His paper provides excellent guidance in the form of the following five design principles.

Principle 1: Data from everywhere needs to be accessible and integrated in a timely fashion
Expanding beyond traditional internal BI sources is necessary as data scientists examine such areas as the behavior of a company's customers and prospects; exchange data with partners, suppliers and governments; gather machine data; acquire attitudinal survey data; and examine econometric data. Unlike internal systems that IT can use to manage data quality, many of these new data sources are incomplete and inconsistent forcing data scientists to leverage the analytical hub to clean the data or synthesize it for analysis.

Advanced analytics has been inhibited by the difficulty in accessing data and by the length of time it takes for traditional IT approaches to physically integrate it. The analytical hub needs to enable data scientists to get the data they need in a timely fashion, either physical integrating it or accessing virtually-integrated data. Data virtualization speeds time-to-analysis and avoids the productivity and error-prone trap of physically integrating data.

Principle 2: Building solutions must be fast, iterative and repeatable
Today's competitive business environment and fluctuating economy are putting the pressure on businesses to make fast, smart decisions. Predictive modeling and advanced analytics enable those decisions to be informed.  Data scientists need to get data and create tentative models fast, change variables and data to refine the models, and do it all over again as behavior, attitudes, products, competition and the economy change. The analytical hub needs to be architected to ensure that solutions can be built to be fast, iterative and repeatable.

Principle 3: The advanced analytics elite needs "run the show"
IT has traditionally managed the data and application environments. In this custodial role, IT has controlled access and has gone through a rigorous process to ensure that data is managed and integrated as an enterprise asset. The enterprise, and IT, needs to entrust data scientists with the responsibility to understand and appropriately use data of varying quality in creating their analytical solutions. Data is often imperfect, but data scientists are the business's trusted advisors who have the knowledge required to be the decision-makers.

Principle 4: Solutions' models must be integrated back into business processes
When predictive models are built, they often need to be integrated into business processes to enable more informed decision-making. After the data scientists build the models, there is a hand-off to IT to perform the necessary integration and support their ongoing operation.

Principle 5: Sufficient infrastructure must be available for conducting advanced analytics
This infrastructure must be scalable and expandable as the data volumes, integration needs and analytical complexities naturally increase.  Insufficient infrastructure has historically limited the depth, breadth and timeliness of advanced analytics as data scientists often used makeshift environments.

Additional Insights
If you are building analytics, and challenged by the data, perhaps you'll want to read Rick's entire paper Analytics Best Practices: The Analytical Hub and his companion piece, Analytics Best Practices: The Analytical Sandbox.

More Stories By Robert Eve

Robert Eve is the EVP of Marketing at Composite Software, the data virtualization gold standard and co-author of Data Virtualization: Going Beyond Traditional Data Integration to Achieve Business Agility. Bob's experience includes executive level roles at leading enterprise software companies such as Mercury Interactive, PeopleSoft, and Oracle. Bob holds a Masters of Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Bachelor of Science from the University of California at Berkeley.

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
The challenges of aggregating data from consumer-oriented devices, such as wearable technologies and smart thermostats, are fairly well-understood. However, there are a new set of challenges for IoT devices that generate megabytes or gigabytes of data per second. Certainly, the infrastructure will have to change, as those volumes of data will likely overwhelm the available bandwidth for aggregating the data into a central repository. Ochandarena discusses a whole new way to think about your next...
CloudEXPO | DevOpsSUMMIT | DXWorldEXPO are the world's most influential, independent events where Cloud Computing was coined and where technology buyers and vendors meet to experience and discuss the big picture of Digital Transformation and all of the strategies, tactics, and tools they need to realize their goals. Sponsors of DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO benefit from unmatched branding, profile building and lead generation opportunities.
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that Big Data Federation to Exhibit at the 22nd International CloudEXPO, colocated with DevOpsSUMMIT and DXWorldEXPO, November 12-13, 2018 in New York City. Big Data Federation, Inc. develops and applies artificial intelligence to predict financial and economic events that matter. The company uncovers patterns and precise drivers of performance and outcomes with the aid of machine-learning algorithms, big data, and fundamental analysis. Their products are deployed...
All in Mobile is a place where we continually maximize their impact by fostering understanding, empathy, insights, creativity and joy. They believe that a truly useful and desirable mobile app doesn't need the brightest idea or the most advanced technology. A great product begins with understanding people. It's easy to think that customers will love your app, but can you justify it? They make sure your final app is something that users truly want and need. The only way to do this is by ...
Digital Transformation and Disruption, Amazon Style - What You Can Learn. Chris Kocher is a co-founder of Grey Heron, a management and strategic marketing consulting firm. He has 25+ years in both strategic and hands-on operating experience helping executives and investors build revenues and shareholder value. He has consulted with over 130 companies on innovating with new business models, product strategies and monetization. Chris has held management positions at HP and Symantec in addition to ...
Dynatrace is an application performance management software company with products for the information technology departments and digital business owners of medium and large businesses. Building the Future of Monitoring with Artificial Intelligence. Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more busine...
Cell networks have the advantage of long-range communications, reaching an estimated 90% of the world. But cell networks such as 2G, 3G and LTE consume lots of power and were designed for connecting people. They are not optimized for low- or battery-powered devices or for IoT applications with infrequently transmitted data. Cell IoT modules that support narrow-band IoT and 4G cell networks will enable cell connectivity, device management, and app enablement for low-power wide-area network IoT. B...
The hierarchical architecture that distributes "compute" within the network specially at the edge can enable new services by harnessing emerging technologies. But Edge-Compute comes at increased cost that needs to be managed and potentially augmented by creative architecture solutions as there will always a catching-up with the capacity demands. Processing power in smartphones has enhanced YoY and there is increasingly spare compute capacity that can be potentially pooled. Uber has successfully ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CrowdReviews.com has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5–7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. CrowdReviews.com is a transparent online platform for determining which products and services are the best based on the opinion of the crowd. The crowd consists of Internet users that have experienced products and services first-hand and have an interest in letting other potential buye...
When talking IoT we often focus on the devices, the sensors, the hardware itself. The new smart appliances, the new smart or self-driving cars (which are amalgamations of many ‘things'). When we are looking at the world of IoT, we should take a step back, look at the big picture. What value are these devices providing. IoT is not about the devices, its about the data consumed and generated. The devices are tools, mechanisms, conduits. This paper discusses the considerations when dealing with the...