Living along Colorado’s front ranges, when it comes to the weather you have come to expect anything to happen. And at any time! When forecasters first talked of temperatures climbing into the low 80s many of us simply shrugged it off and yet, businesses dependent on much cooler temperatures are beginning to suffer. So much for the early arrival of new skis and bindings! So much for the early arrival of heavy clothing! There has been snow high up in the mountains along the continental divide but that was a while ago.
Models developed to help weather forecasters take into consideration past events and oftentimes overemphasize what happened decades ago. What has transpired in recent times is often discounted and again, business suffers revenue shortfalls. On the other hand, the local farmers are bringing in yet another harvest as crops continue to flourish. When I moved to Boulder very few homes were air-conditioned – my first home up in the front ranges certainly wasn’t until I called our friendly Sears store and they installed it for the comfort of my visiting parents – but today, it’s difficult to sell a home that isn’t air-conditioned. In colorful Colorado! While the pundits will put it down as just further evidence of global warming, and they may be right after all, it would be nice to know if we can plan on experiencing more warm weather or if it’s just another short-lived anomaly.
In the posts and commentaries I wrote last month featuring Striim and the NonStop community I wrote about how the catalysts for change are as varied as they are unpredictable. With this in mind, I wrote too of how there was a difference between Business Intelligence (BI) and Business Analytics (BA) and how BI was about what was going on behind you – in other words, mining historical data – whereas BA was all about what was going on in front of you. What is about to happen proving to be of more value to those IT systems processing transactions in real time and where you will find the majority of NonStop systems deployed.
Quoting Dipak Bhudia, Chief Product Architect, Clear Analytics, “Business Intelligence (BI) is essentially a noun, in that it is an umbrella term of the overall scope of acquiring, persisting, warehousing, analyzing and reporting insights along with everything else in its periphery. Business Analytics on the other hand is more of a verb, the act of discovering insights using any tooling or services at your disposal.” No better example of any of this, what’s in front versus what’s behind, can be provided than weather predictions. Get it all wrong and you may waste so many resources unnecessarily moving populations away from storms and subsequently wearing the consequences.
The time has come when the most available, and simply the best, transaction processing system needs to be better integrated with modern business analytic engines. Yes, it’s about spotting “information gems” as they appear in the constant ebb and flow of data streams passing by – the spoils from victory today are going to those businesses who respond in a more timely fashion to opportunities. This has been the major premise influencing the take-up of BA and something frequently referenced in the posts to this blog. However, what’s changing for the NonStop community is the reinstatement of their importance to business now that HPE is demonstrating a greater commitment to NonStop. It was difficult to justify further investments in future solutions on NonStop if there simply was no future for NonStop!
“What we are witnessing first hand is an elevated interest in better integrating the world of BA with NonStop solutions,” said Striim Cofounder and EVP, Sami Akbay. “It’s become evident of late that plans to scale back on NonStop investments may have been overstated even as the expectation that CIOs would be more likely to invest in open platforms than NonStop, resulting in many more queries coming to us from business heavily reliant on 24 X 7 transaction processing.” This isn’t entirely unexpected as it appears HPE is listening more closely to its big customers and the porting of the NonStop operating system and supporting stack to the Intel x86 architecture may prove to be just the beginning as HPE continues to explore additional ways to ensure the price points for NonStop systems continue to come down.
“It’s happening at a timely point for us,” added Akbay. “Shortly, we will be exhibiting at the annual NonStop Technical Boot Camp that is to be held in San Jose and the expectations are that several hundred of the biggest users in the world of transaction processing solutions will be in attendance and this is a marketplace where Striim has become well known. We are expecting to be engaged in numerous conversations as to how best Striim can help their business detect and then respond to those gems uncovered in data streams open to solutions running on NonStop.” Indeed, Boot Camp is always the premier place to find out more about new features and products and to converse with those individuals closest to the technology.
Boot Camp is an event that I attend with a measure of regularity that proffers me opportunities to talk to NonStop community leaders so I will be more than attentive to all that transpires with respect to NonStop and Big Data. HPE sees Big Data as a key influence on its vision for hybrid infrastructure as it weaves together the marriage between traditional IT and cloud computing. It’s a compelling story and reflects the growing trend within business to take an incremental, baby steps, approach to embracing clouds.
The very fact that NonStop is a part of this vision and that HPE continues to demonstrate its greater commitment to NonStop hasn’t escaped the attention of many CIOs. Likewise, the fact that Striim is targeting NonStop hasn’t escaped the attention of the NonStop community so it will be highly enlightening to see what transpires at Boot Camp, and no matter the outcome, there will certainly be a lot more written to this blog in the coming weeks. I look forward to hearing more from everyone in the NonStop community!