I was afraid that writing for Web distribution would diminish my authority as an analytics-industry observer. After all, the expense of producing and distributing printed magazines says that someone, even if only the publisher, thinks that the content justifies the cost. Sure, items on the Web are more findable and, simultaneously, timely and long-lived. But for an established author, the threat of losing the distinction conferred by paper counterbalances greater reach and timeliness. That threat hasn't been realized.IntelligentEnterprise.com Editor in Chief Doug Henschen says that the magazine is racking up great, growing numbers on-line — thanks! — and I think (and hope) that the switch has made me a better writer. Somehow I've gotten out 48 articles, averaging (I'd guess) 500 words each, this year. (I wrote 35 columns and 13 news articles for IE in the preceding 6 years, plus 11 feature articles since 1998 for IE and its predecessors.) Thanks to hyperlinks, Web articles don't have to be self-contained, and on-line you can carry on a conversation with readers and with other writers and industry figures. I believe that the change in style, coupled with the faster pace, have made for better focused, more to-the-point writing. I plan to continue covering breakthrough analysis: software and practices that allow you to work bigger, faster, deeper, and wider in efforts to extract meaning and value from the spectrum of enterprise information sources. I will continue covering text/content analytics, complex-event/data-stream processing, data mining and predictive analytics, advanced search, DBMS innovations, and open source in addition to conventional BI. Please do send me your feedback or just stay tuned, and best wishes for the coming year!
Seth Grimes is an analytics strategist with Washington DC based Alta Plana Corporation. He consults on data management and analysis systems.It has been a year since Intelligent Enterprise magazine went on-line only. The last print issue, dated January 2007, came out last December. I thought I would miss the paper edition but now I see that, from a writer's point of view, the overhead of a print run, particularly for an IT publication, is a greater liability than may be justified by the extra value delivered.