Google to Acquire Looker for $2.6 Billion

Google has a vision of offering the most complete and comprehensive data platform in the industry. It wants to provide a true end-to-end data platform across clouds, and the last two words there are key. Customers want an end-to-end multi-cloud data platform and Google is committed to delivering just that. As such, Google continues to invest in areas that enable it to further this goal, and this morning Google announced its intentions to buy Looker for $2.6 billion in an all-cash transaction. It’s a natural acquisition for Google as the companies have worked together for years and share hundreds of the same customers.

Topics: Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI

Looking Ahead to Google Next 2019

With Google Next 2019 coming up, there are a few items I’m looking forward to hearing about.

First and foremost, I’m excited to hear from the new GCP CEO Thomas Kurian and what his vision and plans are for the organization over the next 12-18 months. I think many in the industry understand some of the steps Google needs to make to become the cloud powerhouse it desires to be, with arguably the largest being a greater focus on hybrid cloud enablement. I think we caught a glimpse of that with the Alooma acquisition. I’m hoping to hear more about the plans for Alooma, where/how it will be integrated and some roadmap details on deeper integrations across GCP services.

Topics: Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI Google Next

The Economics of Modernizing Your Enterprise Data Warehouse

Enterprise data warehouses (EDWs) are often deemed the most valuable asset in the data center, serving as the backbone of the business. The ongoing insight gained from these solutions has justified the significant up-front capital investments and ongoing operational costs, but the rigidity of the traditional EDW is forcing organizations to reevaluate their approach to analytics and business intelligence.

Topics: Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI Google

2019 Predictions for Artificial Intelligence (Video)

2018 was a breakout year for AI and machine learning. Practically every vendor has or is working on an AI story, and businesses are looking for the easiest ways to embrace and benefit from the technology as soon as possible to maintain their competitive edge. There have been some amazing and eye-opening stories throughout the year that hint at the future: Google Duplex and an AI assistant making appointments at local businesses over the phone, NVIDIA AI creating faces of fake humans, AI beating doctors in diagnosing cancer, and facial recognition at concerts to catch stalkers. The good news is that we are nowhere near Skynet, and we won’t be there for quite some time, if ever. But the line between hype and reality is starting to blur and 2019 will be a year of applicability, shifting from hype to real-world usage.

Topics: Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI ESG Predictions

DDN Partners with NVIDIA Targeting AI

Today, DataDirect Networks (DDN) announced a partnership with NVIDIA to deliver infrastructure designed for artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning workloads. The solution combines the DDN A3I with the NVIDIA DGX-1 and is preconfigured to eliminate the guesswork associated with infrastructure deployment and configuration. Additionally, DDN claims the system offers both the high performance and the massive capacity scale required for the intense demands of training AI algorithms. According to DDN, the solution delivers 200 PB (yep, that says petabytes) of capacity in a single namespace, and more than 1.4TB/s of performance.

Topics: Storage Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI

Cloudera and Hortonworks Merge

This is exciting stuff, so let’s jump right in.

First on the financials, which are sure to dominate the headlines. It’s a stock merger with Cloudera stockholders getting 60% stake in the new entity and Hortonworks stockholders obviously getting the other 40%. The combined organization is initially being valued at $5.2 billion, with Hortonworks having found positive cash flow by offering robust support services across the data analytics pipeline and Cloudera too relying on incorporating support within its subscription-based pricing model.

Topics: Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI

Imanis Data Announces New Version

Hadoop and NoSQL workloads are pervasive in production environments and require enterprise-class data protection, yet few data protection solutions offer such capabilities. That’s the problem Imanis Data is zooming in on. Imanis Data is demonstrating that it is squarely focused on product execution and is putting its B-round of $13.5 million from earlier this year to good use. The recent announcement of v 4.0 introduces many new data protection features, including some innovative machine learning-based capabilities. More information in this ESG Brief, Imanis Data Launches Version 4.0 and Delivers Machine Learning-based RPO.

Topics: Cybersecurity Data Protection Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI

Extending the Value of Hadoop and Spark with a Cloud-based Managed Service

With the growth of data and the focus on becoming more data-driven, many organizations have turned to Apache Hadoop and Apache Spark as their big data and analytics framework to store and process their data. While the solutions are quite powerful, to effectively manage a constantly evolving infrastructure that must continue to meet the demands of a modern business, it can quickly become a logistical and administrative nightmare. With the understanding that organizations have plans to adopt cloud technology and one of the top use cases for existing IaaS and PaaS users is for data analytics, the idea of leveraging an Hadoop- and Spark-based managed service in the cloud is quite appealing.

Topics: Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI Google Next

Google NEXT - Democratizing Analytics and Artificial Intelligence

Going into Google NEXT, I expected announcements across the entire cloud business. Between their recent (positive) financials, customer traction and (more importantly) growth, and a rapidly expanding list of offerings and managed services, I expected announcements to focus on what I view as their areas of differentiation: foundational built-in security by design, commitment to open-source technologies in their own and across clouds, core AI and ML solutions and services that are embedded/ integrated across GCP services, and easy-to-use cloud-native collaboration products in GSuite. While I’ll let my colleagues share their thoughts on security, mobility/devices, and dev/ops, I’ll be focusing my recap on analytics, artificial intelligence, and machine learning.

Topics: Internet of Things Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI Google Next

Actifio Highlights the Value of Data at Data Driven 2018

I recently went to Actifio Data Driven 2018, Actifio's global user conference held at the Fontainebleau Miami Beach. At Data Driven, Actifio's customers and partners showcased how and why they use Actifio solutions. I had a number of key takeaways from the conference.

Actifio clearly understands the value and importance of data. This was not just another data protection company adopting the term "Data Management" to frame themselves as more than just backup and recovery. Data Driven 2018 demonstrated that Actifio understands that the value comes from how customers use the data, not just that the data is made available. In session after session and customer meeting after customer meeting, I saw how customers and partners discussed the uses of the data made available by Actifio. I was impressed by the real-world benefits that were highlighted by everyone.

Topics: Data Protection Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI Cloud Services & Orchestration