Predictive Text Analytics and SPSS's Predictive Enterprise Vision - InformationWeek
IoT
IoT
Software // Information Management
Commentary
7/17/2009
04:11 PM
Seth Grimes
Seth Grimes
Commentary
Connect Directly
Twitter
RSS
E-Mail
50%
50%
RELATED EVENTS
The Real Impact of a Data Security Breach
Aug 02, 2017
In this webcast, experts discuss the real losses associated with a breach, both in the data center ...Read More>>

Predictive Text Analytics and SPSS's Predictive Enterprise Vision

Damn trademarks. I'm slated to speak on predictive text analytics at October's Predictive Analytics World conference. SPSS's Olivier Jouve commented, "Seth, glad to see you using 'Predictive Text Analytics' - expression that SPSS and I crafted in 2003!" While SPSS hasn't trademarked "predictive analytics," I'm impressed with the company's broader vision to similarly own that field...

Damn trademarks. I'm slated to speak on predictive text analytics at October's Predictive Analytics World conference near Washington DC. Release of the PAW agenda elicited a twitter comment from my friend Olivier Jouve, "Seth, glad to see you using 'Predictive Text Analytics' - expression that SPSS and I crafted in 2003!" (I'm at @sethgrimes on twitter by the way.) Olivier is SPSS vice president for corporate development. He and SPSS do deserve credit for promoting wide commercial deployment of text technologies that had previously been accessible only to researchers. I only regret that before titling my PAW talk, I hadn't realized that SPSS had trademarked "predictive text analytics," turning a term that deserves wide business application into SPSS property. Had I known of the trademark, I would have chosen a different title. While SPSS hasn't trademarked "predictive analytics," a more general term that has been in use for years, I'm impressed with the company's ability to execute on a broader vision to similarly own that field.SPSS Senior Vice President Colin Shearer sketched out the company's Predictive Enterprise vision for me over lunch in May, 2005... literally, and for some reason I taped his sketch to my office wall. (I have lots of stuff posted including, given my interest in visualization, a variety maps and infographics.) It includes predictive analytics, albeit on equal footing with deployment and decision optimization. At that point, in 2005, the company had already been talking about predictive analytics for some time, trotting out a definition by Gareth Herschel of Gartner, "Predictive analysis helps connect data to effective action by drawing reliable conclusions about current conditions and future events," and applying tag line, "Understand, Predict, Act." SPSS's latest release, PASW (Predictive Analytics Software) Statistics 18, announced on July 14 and slated for mid-August availability, is a next realization step.

SPSS text technologies belong to different software stack, however, with a different software update cycle. The linguistic elements trace their origins to LexiQuest technology acquired by SPSS in 2002. Olivier's tweet pointed readers to a 2003 write-up by Philip Howard of Bloor Research that defined predictive text analytics essentially as information extraction from textual sources for joint analysis with numerical data. That genre of unified analytics has indeed proven its value in applications that range from customer-experience management to fraud and risk modeling, where one might link text-extracted information with structured transactional, demographic, and behavioral data. Contrary to Bloor's 2003 view, I do include clustering, categorization, and classification of text and text-extracted information -- of documents (HTML, PDF & DOC text as well as audio & video clips) and of the "features" they contain -- as a predictive function. This variety of prediction doesn't involve forecasting time based variables; rather it involves automated decisions about the nature and meaning of often-ambiguous data objects based on the analyst's inferred purposes and intent.

In my PAW abstract, I describe predictive text analytics, naturally enough, as predictive analytics applied to textual material. This short description doesn't capture an essential point, that text analytics brings semantics -- discovered, contextually relevant meaning -- to the practice of predictive analytics. There are some great text analytics solutions out there from SPSS and other companies and some really illuminating use cases and user stories. Some are extending predictive capabilities from entities and facts to concepts, events, and sentiment, making for even richer analytics. There's a lot to learn here and a lot to talk about. Stay tuned!Damn trademarks. I'm slated to speak on predictive text analytics at October's Predictive Analytics World conference. SPSS's Olivier Jouve commented, "Seth, glad to see you using 'Predictive Text Analytics' - expression that SPSS and I crafted in 2003!" While SPSS hasn't trademarked "predictive analytics," I'm impressed with the company's broader vision to similarly own that field...

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security Enterprise
To learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
IT Strategies to Conquer the Cloud
Chances are your organization is adopting cloud computing in one way or another -- or in multiple ways. Understanding the skills you need and how cloud affects IT operations and networking will help you adapt.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Flash Poll