I’m not Original

Originally Posted on March 7 2011, 9:13 AM

I must thank a lot of readers because the #newBI post series has gained an unexpected amount of attention. It has been discussed on Twitter, shared on other social networks and I even received a few e-mails on the subject.
While some are dubious, there’s quite a large consensus on the basic assumptions. This sounds encouraging.

Of course, these ideas are not completely original. While they’re solidly grounded in my experience, there are, as always, some forerunners who envisioned these ideas before. I will mention two of them, which I find particularly clear, but, please, point me to other articles, posts, whitepapers or anything which express similar concepts, if you stumble upon them..

George Shen, recently, on this article  (unluckily it is now archived an can be read only after subscribing) makes a very good description of what is often called analytics and explains why they’re what the business, now more than ever, needs and why they’re not yet delivered in a truly accessible way. George, with an exactitude I do not possess, describes the analytics business potential and the architecture required to make them work. In particular, he advocates the embedding of the analytics within a closed loop control process to enforce a positive feedback out of fact-based decisions.

Long before I could even imagine that there was an issue in current BI model, Neil Raden, a world famous BI analyst, wrote this whitepaper  on the subject. Six years ago he realized that BI applications were too inflexible, too “read only” to be actually a good complement of decision making. While, at the dawn of BI, DSS systems embedded and embryo of these concepts, they were quickly sidelined by newer technologies with a different focus.

So, as you can see, there are some analysts who broadly agree with me, but are less vehement in advocating a new generation of BI applications. There’s a good bunch of us to go on with.
Stay Tuned!



newbi, businessintelligence

3139 views and 1 response

  • Mar 10 2011, 6:00 PM

    Ellie K responded:

    The article by George Shen was one of the best critiques of BI that I've taken the time to read through, in one sitting, from start to finish. If it weren't published by such a heavily walled-in site, I would have penned words of praise for the author in the comment section.

    I too am happy to find I'm not original. Well, in this regard! Specifically, that I am not alone in my concern that implementation of BI is not as successful nor oft-used as one would hope. Particularly in light of the time, expense and industry emphasis on it.

    It is rare indeed for me to feel that frisson of delight elicited by a data warehouse that has transitioned through the software development life cycle, runs in production and is actively used by the enterprise it was intended to serve. These sentiments, or better yet, anecdotal observations are the reason I, and perhaps others, have responded so favorably to your #newBI.

    Here's a suggestion, which you said in your post, would be allowed. Could you post stories, case-studies, what-have-you, about bona fide successful instances of business intelligence, in active use and contributing positively to an organization's bottom line? Items relating to bigdata, systems of record, and data warehouses are of course my primary interest.

    If this is an unrealistic request because

    • there examples are far too numerous, or
    • it would be far too daunting a job and use of your time to find many examples (assuming that most vendor-published articles would not be elgible, because of agent issues)

    • then you will have strengthened the case for, or against, the importance of #newBI.