Another Reason to Put Data in the Cloud - InformationWeek

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Commentary
6/16/2009
08:59 AM
David Linthicum
David Linthicum
Commentary
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Another Reason to Put Data in the Cloud

Google Labs recently announced Google Fusion Tables, an "experimental system" for fusing data management and collaboration... The use cases here are numerous, but the core idea is that users will upload data, and then analyze and visualize the data on Google Maps or mashed up with other APIs, such as the Google Visualization API...

Google Labs recently announced Google Fusion Tables, an "experimental system" for fusing data management and collaboration. In other words, it's a means to merge many data sources, including any electronic conversations around data, visualization and data queries. Fusion Tables provide a platform to analyze data along with tools for electronically collaborating about that analysis.

The use cases here are numerous, but the core idea is that users will upload data, and then analyze and visualize the data on Google Maps or mashed up with other APIs, such as the Google Visualization API. Nothing new there, right? Wrong. Fusion Tables also provide for the discussion of data at the row or column level, or even specific data elements... think database and business intelligence meets Google Docs. However, the biggest bang for this new cloud service is the ability to "fuse" multiple sets of data that are logically related and then determine patterns.For example, you could view recent home sales as related to default rates and household income to uncover patterns such as who will most likely default on a home loan. Not only will Google Fusion Tables provide a base comparison analysis, but you'll be able to visualize that analysis to make the point. You could also start online collaborative discussions around specific pieces of data. In short, you're getting the best of the analytics without missing out on valuable input from humans.

Take this to the next level and you have the ability to use existing public data APIs, such as the financial history of a particular stock, or other public data that will soon be available from the government through data provider sites like data.gov, and others. This provides you with the ability to leverage the "network effect" of cloud computing and SaaS, mixing and matching the data on the platform of the Web. Add your own business data into the context of public data sets, and the applications for business intelligence are limitless. Business intelligence developers can be much more creative and impactful.

If you ask me, this is just the beginning. As more business data is uploaded to the clouds, and as more interesting data comes online, the use of this type of service will be driven virally into enterprises. Indeed, I can foresee a day when the majority of data analytics will exist in the clouds, and for good, practical reasons. Wouldn't you like to leverage tons of data you don't have to own or host? That's what will soon be possible through the use of on-demand data analytics and collaboration systems such as Google Fusions Tables and others that are making their way onto the cloud computing scene.

Products such as Google Fusion Tables are changing the enterprise.Google Labs recently announced Google Fusion Tables, an "experimental system" for fusing data management and collaboration... The use cases here are numerous, but the core idea is that users will upload data, and then analyze and visualize the data on Google Maps or mashed up with other APIs, such as the Google Visualization API...

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