Gartner's BI Reboot, Everybody Loves Spark: Big Data Roundup - InformationWeek

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Gartner's BI Reboot, Everybody Loves Spark: Big Data Roundup

Gartner completely reworked its Magic Quadrant for BI and analytics, Hortonworks saw a big revenue jump, and support for Spark skyrocketed. That, and more in our Big Data Roundup for the week ending February 14. Plus, why crush is better than chocolate.

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Gartner has ripped the guts out of its Magic Quandrant for BI and Analytics Platforms. Quarterly earnings reported by Hortonworks revealed strong revenue growth. BlueData announced new support for streaming platforms, including Apache Spark. And, we get an inside view into the big data workings at eBay. We have all this and more in this week's Big Data Roundup. Plus, we take a look at which Valentine keywords make direct-marketing emails most successful.

Let's start with Gartner's Magic Quadrant for BI and Analytics Platforms. The analyst firm completely revised the factors it looks at when evaluating vendors for its recently published report. That led to a big change in who qualified for the coveted Leaders quadrant -- only three companies remained in that top right square. Oracle fell off the report entirely. Gartner said it was looking for vendors who could satisfy both modes of bimodal IT -- the traditional reporting of BI and analytics, but also the real-time, self-service, and embedded qualities that are driving the more modern mode of business intelligence.

(Image: PonyWang/iStockphoto)

(Image: PonyWang/iStockphoto)

Hortonworks Revenues Soar

Also this week, Hadoop distribution company Hortonworks reported its quarterly and annual earnings, beating analyst estimates and promising to hit break even on its adjusted EBIDTA. Fourth quarter revenue climbed to $37.4 million from  $12.7 million for the same period a year ago, but the company's expenses still outpace sales. The Q4 net loss was $50.2 million.

[ Can IT transform old BI systems? Here's the story of how one IT leader did just that. Read Transforming An Antiquated Business Intelligence Process. ]

Everybody Loves Spark

Technologies for real-time analytics continued to gain momentum this week, too, with more vendors announcing support for Spark Streaming and other big data technologies.

BlueData, a big data platform company that uses container technology to enable big-data-as-a-service, announced this week that it's offering a new solution for building real-time data pipelines with Spark Streaming, Kafka, and Cassandra. The company said the offering is designed for what it calls "Fast Data," or applications that require real-time or near real-time information.

Impetus Technologies this week announced StreamAnalytix 2.0 featuring support for Apache Spark Streaming in addition to existing support for Apache Storm. "Among stream processing engines, Spark Streaming is gaining popularity, while Apache Storm has been in production deployments for many years and is a robust, proven, widely used option," the company said in a statement.

eBay's Big Data Play

Meanwhile, my colleague Charles Babcock gave us a peek inside the analytics and data science efforts at eBay. He talks about how the online auction and marketplace giant evaluated the top-selling items of the 2015 holiday shopping season, and then leveraged that information to alert suppliers so they could improve their supply chains. The technology eBay created has now been contributed to the Apache Software Foundation.

Anaconda 2.5 Debuts

Continuum Analytics, the creator and force behind Anaconda, an open source analytics platform powered by Python, has released Anaconda 2.5. The new version is coupled with Intel Math Kernel Library optimization, which the company said will "supercharge analytics for data science teams worldwide." In addition, the company said that the R-Essentials package with Anaconda is bundled with Microsoft R Open.

Crush Is Better Than Chocolate?

Finally, in honor of Valentine's Day on Feb. 14, our thoughts naturally turn to which words will compel people to open your marketing emails. We're not sure how scientific this research by GoDaddy is, but the subject line keywords that are scoring big this year include "crush," which increases click-through rates by 205%; "date," which increases clicks by 166%; and "romance," which increases clicks by 155%. Sadly, "chocolate" only increased click-through rates by 110%.

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Jessica Davis is a Senior Editor at InformationWeek. She covers enterprise IT leadership, careers, artificial intelligence, data and analytics, and enterprise software. She has spent a career covering the intersection of business and technology. Follow her on twitter: ... View Full Bio

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User Rank: Strategist
2/16/2016 | 1:10:53 PM
I'm so curious how much the Gartner ratings actually affect buying power. Love Garter, of course. Smart folks, but I wonder how the grid informs buying these days.



Karen J. Bannan, commenting on behalf of IDG and Infomatica.
User Rank: Ninja
2/15/2016 | 12:44:13 PM
Re: Anaconda 2.5 Debuts
I know of a number of companies that use Spark to process data. I think one of the reasons it is so popular is its performance. The product seems to be capable of handling huge workloads, and when you are dealing with massive datasets that really can come in handy. 
User Rank: Ninja
2/15/2016 | 6:24:18 AM
Re: Anaconda 2.5 Debuts
Anaconda 2.5 is based on Python -- the programing language has been known to be flexible in the area of data analytics. Tableau is a virtualization tool that is great to share large amounts of information in small bits. Anaconda seems to be aimed at the middle to provide the best of both worlds. 
Li Tan
Li Tan,
User Rank: Ninja
2/14/2016 | 9:21:47 PM
Anaconda 2.5 Debuts
Do some companies already try with Anaconda 2.5 Debuts? How does it perform in big data analytics area?
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