SAP Sapphire Now 2021 Review

As with any event, Sapphire 2021 was loaded with product launches, updates, and delighted customers who shared how they are working with SAP to better leverage data that can enable them to adapt to a dynamic business environment. At the root of the keynote and breakout sessions was a common theme that likely resonated with most, if not all, attendees and that was the idea of extending the value of working together as a community to the business.

Topics: Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI

Insights From IBM Think 2021 (Video)

IBM Think! 2021 delivered a number of areas IT leaders may want to consider with new and existing initiatives and infrastructure deployments. This year’s event amplified the importance of growth in artificial intelligence as it relates to IBM Cloud Pak, digital transformation and digital business models, IBM Watson Orchestrate self-service automation, public and hybrid cloud, and application and infrastructure modernization, to say the least. Our research at ESG aligns nicely to the messages IBM delivered this year. Listen as Mark Peters, ESG Practice Director; Scott Sinclair, ESG Senior Analyst; Mike Leone, ESG Senior Analyst, and I discuss and share our thoughts on this year’s IBM Think! 2021 event.

Topics: Storage Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI Application & Infrastructure Modernization

Data Engineering and Self-service – Don’t Get Left Behind

As organizations grapple with ongoing data ecosystem complexity, the key question being asked is: how can organizations take back control of their data ecosystem and enable more people to better leverage data that matters to them? I believe it starts with data empowerment for all the key data stakeholders throughout the business, including both experts and generalists alike. Organizations need help in ensuring the right people are empowered to do their jobs more effectively and not get inundated with tasks that fall outside of their job descriptions. While this is true across the entire business from IT and operations teams to business analysts and developers, an area that continues to have a spotlight put on it is the data team, consisting of data engineers, data scientists, and ML engineers.

Topics: Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI

Accelerate Edge-to-cloud and Artificial Intelligence with Lenovo’s Smart Infrastructure Solutions

In March 2021, Lenovo announced new offerings that provide new ways for clients to accelerate computing with their Lenovo TruScale Services, which enables flexible consumption of server resources. The purpose of this launch was to accelerate real-time insights from the edge to the cloud; incorporate eighteen new ThinkSystem and ThinkAgile systems in the portfolio by expanding AMD’s family of third generation EPYC microprocessors, including eight new ThinkSystem V2 servers updated with third generation Intel Xeon scalable processors; and deliver ready-to-deploy analytics and AI offerings with SAS edge analytics, city security AI with Addfor, and scalable machine learning with cnvrg.io.

Topics: IT Infrastructure Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI Application & Infrastructure Modernization

Oracle's Autonomous Data Warehouse Enhancements: "Democratizing Simplicity"

So, here’s the thing – regardless of how complex or simple IT is to manage and to run, it’s still all-too-often the aegis of just the IT department; and that’s especially true of data lakes, marts, or warehouses, call them what you will. That’s not to say regular non-IT users can’t and don’t consume the valuable outputs from these endeavors (of course they do, that’s the point), but anything new is invariably only achieved with the necessary involvement of highly trained and skilled help – DBAs, system administrators—IT personnel of some sort.

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

Oracle’s APEX Enhancements & Database 21c Release Continue Progress on its Magnum Opus

Sometimes vendors focus on the integration of their abilities, while sometimes they emphasize improvements to those abilities. Oracle’s announcements today – the free-standing, cloud-based delivery of its APEX low-code application development tool, as well as the 21c "innovation" release of its eponymous database – do both.

Let’s briefly cover what was announced before commenting on what it all means.

Topics: Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI

Get Ready for the Hybrid Cloud Data Warehousing Surge

Data warehouse modernization has become an essential move to meet the demands of the modern business. And it is easy to get lost in the hype when it comes to modernizing with a “cloud-first” or “cloud-only” approach. Organizations are drawn to the promise of ultra-simplicity, unlimited scale, improved agility, and ubiquitous accessibility. But for some organizations that are on this path, they are starting to see the tradeoffs they have made. One of those tradeoffs comes with price/performance. Not that modern cloud data warehouses do not perform well, but if you want the low-latency performance to truly support real-time, you will either have to pay for it (especially at scale as more end-users want access to the data) or minimize your ability to truly achieve real-time responsiveness. And it is forcing organizations to rethink their cloud data warehouse strategies. Maybe an on-premises data warehouse does have a place? And so does a cloud data warehouse?

Topics: Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI

Things to Think About on the Day of Snowflake's IPO

The day has finally arrived. Today, Snowflake will IPO under the ticker SNOW. Many knew this was coming, even before Frank Slootman was brought in as CEO. But I don’t think it was expected to have as much fanfare as we’re seeing. Buffet (Berkshire Hathaway) is on board. Benioff (Salesforce) is on board. It’s being called the hottest tech IPO of the year. So, what’s the draw? Is it the differentiable technology? Not really. The number of customers? Nope. Customer growth? Impressive, but no. What about the total market size? Getting there. What about the value propositions it offers customers? Well yes, but I would argue there are several competitors that offer similar value propositions. So, what is it? The opportunity. The opportunity is simply massive.

Topics: Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI

6 Reasons BigQuery Omni Will Change the Game for Google Cloud

A couple weeks back, Google Cloud’s multi-week virtual event Next 20: OnAir started. There were a number of announcements, but the biggest was BigQuery Omni. By combining BigQuery and Anthos, BigQuery Omni enables organizations to embrace multi-cloud analytics by cost-effectively bringing Google Cloud's data warehouse to where the data resides across public cloud environments.

Topics: Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI

From Data Warehouse to Data Lake to Data Lakehouse

First came the traditional enterprise data warehouse (EDW). Structured data is integrated into an EDW from external data sources using ETLs (check out my recent blog post on this). The data can then be queried by end-users for BI and reporting. EDWs were purpose built for BI and reporting. But with the growing desire to incorporate more data, of different types, from different sources, of different change rates, the traditional EDW has fallen short. It does not support unstructured data (i.e., video, audio, unstructured text, etc.), streaming is for the most part out of the question, there is no data science or machine learning that can be done directly on the data, and because of their closed/proprietary nature, costs quickly skyrocket as organizations scale their deployments. Modern, cloud-based EDWs have looked to address several of these challenges and done a good job of it, but some challenges still remain, with the obvious being lack of unstructured data support.

Topics: Data Platforms, Analytics, & AI