BI in Barcelona, Scary Big Data, Cool 3D Analytics and More

Another analytics round up – what’s going on in the analytics world this week?


Gartner BI and Analytics Summit: Nos Vemos en Barcelona!

A host of SAP Analytics folks will be in Barcelona next week for the Gartner BI and Analytics SummitJason Rose will be presenting with Mark Cooper of British American Tobacco on Tuesday 5th February at 12:50-13:10:

SAP: The New Analytical Agenda: Innovate, Compete, and Connect
Practical ideas for formulating a BI Strategy to accelerate innovation and transform the way employees, partners and customers work with information and each other. Discover how companies are applying analytics to mine internal and external data sources to connect with customers, generate greater value for them, and engender stronger customer loyalty.

And I will be presenting a session on Wednesday 06 February, 2013 at 12:30 – 13:00:

SAP: Key Trends in Analytics: The Future Role of Big Data, Predictive, and Mobile
I’ll be covering the top innovations in analytics over the last year, and how SAP can help – including the convergence of analytics and operations, packaged BI solutions, and bridging the gap between agile and enterprise BI.

The theme of the SAP BusinessObjects booth will be Power, Speed, Precision, Performance, and will feature some of the McLaren F1 showcase demos you can see here:

SAP representatives James Fisher, Waldemar Adams, Thierry Audas, Dave Williams, Alexis Sarat, Nick Wall, Jean Latiere, Stephane Jouaux, and Clemens Praendl will be on hand to answer questions and show off the technology, and there will be local representation from Felix Fleck and Adolfo Pellicer (here’s Adolfo explaining why “la solución in-memory HANA es el corazón de nuestro BI” and the importance of SAP’s strategy in “Big Data, movilidad y Cloud”)

Follow the #GartnerBI hashtag on Twitter for more (note, some people claim it’s #GartnerBIA)…


Analytics On The Rampage

Kurt Bilafer points out that SAP is doing great in the APJ region. Come see one of the analytic sessions I’ll be presenting at! Manila on February 20th, Kuala Lumpur on February 21st, and Singapore on February 22nd, Sydney on February 27th, Melbourne on February 28th, and Auckland on March 1st.

A fascinating post by Phil Green, co-author of Misleading Indicators, shows that there can be lots of debate about why decisions go wrong (see the comments).

Richard Barrett of the CFOKnowledge Blog explains how to “iron out” some profitability issues in the Outer Hebrides.

The readers of Consumer Goods Technology voted SAP as their top business intelligence choice. And there’s more of that in the pipeline: Ty Miller did a great job going through the details of BusinessObjects 4.1 and future directions (registration required) for ASUG.

It looks like in-memory may be better and cheaper than clusters for Hadoop, too?

Using analytics to change behavior? A "human infographic" video tries to improve traffic in Los Angeles (but plays with the numbers? I’d say more than 3% change shirts, and they go much more than 15% faster!)

These chaotic update posts of mine are really just an homage to the Toasted Layer.

Mico Yuk asked on Twitter what were folks favorite and least favorite BI conferences, and what they’d like to add. My answers:

  • Favorite: Any where people aren’t shy to give (polite) feedback about the presentations and other information they would like to see
  • Least favorite: Any where I’m not sure if the person next to me at coffee is interested in analytics
  • Something to add: Some empty slots towards the end that would be filled by live Q&As on a topic that attendees voted for during the conference. And maybe some more formal, structured networking (speed dating style — HR 2013 is testing this)


Big, Scary Big Data

The New York Times did some “etymological detective work” to resolve the tricky question of who first coined the term “big data” in its current meaning (and some man-in-the street reporting showed that nobody really knows what they current meaning is

What we do know is that big data is powerful, and that means it’s also potentially scary. New technology such as Facebook’s Graph Search lead to interesting new opportunities – and some really embarrassing or dangerous possibilities.

In the future, your credit rating might be determined by what you post on social networks. Douglas Merill, Google’s former chief information officer and the founder of ZestFinance—a startup that leverages "big data" to provide credit scoring information—told the New York Times last year that “we feel like all data is credit data, we just don’t know how to use it yet”. This is all the more scary when Bob Lewis of InfoWorld explains why big data can lead to answers that are clear, compelling – and wrong.

Not scared yet? How about this new device, powered by a few hundred standard phone camera chips, that lets authorities observe and track all movements in an entire medium-sized town, in real-time, from the sky:

The flip side of scary data is data that can save lives. Google’s driverless car uses lasers and other sensors — and lots of computer power — to track exactly what’s happening at every moment, as shown in this video. Google thinks that the technology could save around 30,000 lives in the US each year.  Startup SenSen networks is using SAP HANA to track suspect vehicles with a sophisticated “video business analytic” solution. Another startup, AlertEnterprise, uses HANA to combat insider threats at airports


3D Meets Analytics

3D imaging meets dashboards with SAP Visual Enterprise:

You can download the free SAP Visual Enterprise mobile application from the Apple App Store

iPad Screenshot 5

Gaming company Bigpoint use HANA to ensure Battlestar Galactica Online players stay in the game even after their ship has just been blown up:


SAP HANA Is Music To Execs’ Ears (And Startups)

SAP is helping disrupt business: here’s a nice balanced piece by ASUG about John Deere’s choice of SAP Business Suite powered by SAP HANA. And HANA is disrupting the world of Governance, Risk, and Compliance with “fraud detection in quasi-real-time”. But John Appleby says that’s the easy part, and asks the question: “does SAP has the chops to disrupt itself?”

Part of winning in the future will be persuading more startups to join those already using HANA. Lot of SAP Startup Forums and developer outreach is are being planned for 2013 around the world. And barriers are being steadily lowered to access and test out the new technology. Running it in production can cost as little as a dollar, according to John Appleby (i.e. SAP HANA One for $1/hour, plus $2.50/hour for Amazon, 60Gb Maximum. )

Personally, I think we’re just scratching the surface of what is possible. As an example, Lucas Sparvieri explains in detail how to use SAP HANA’s predictive libraries together with the embedded text analysis algorithms ( Corey Adams and Greg Chase get filtered out in the process!)

Finally, what else can you do with SAP HANA? Set it to music: “HANA is a Winner” with some amazing keyboard skills by SAP Executive Sanjay Poonen:


Mobile, Social, and Cloud

This week saw the release of the latest Blackberry phones and the Blackberry 10 OS. SAP is one of Blackberry’s partners in the launch, and has been working on mobile financial analytics. SAP CIO Olivier Bussmann is impressed and explains why one thing missing from his office is paper.

What is thought leadership?, asks SAP’s Michael Brenner – although I would add that you also need to answer questions that people don’t YET have…

You’ve heard of private clouds, and public clouds – now, thanks to Dutch artist Berndnaut Smilde, there are indoor clouds (there are real, not photoshopped). Check out his gallery for more

photo: Cassander Eeftinck Schattenkerk