A couple weeks ago, I was asked to teach a class at Big Data Tech Con in Boston (March 31 – April 2). Our submission essentially said that the class would explore a cooperative analytics architecture, and should include some solid real world examples, and I took up the gauntlet.
One part of my job that I have always loved is case studies. There’s nothing that gives you a more solid sense of how our software works in a cooperative architecture solving real problems than digging into the technical detail and business results of a customer’s project. We have some really brilliant customers who have taken the capabilities of our Actian Analytics Platform and put them to work in innovative ways that really blow me away.
In particular, two companies jumped immediately to mind, Autometrics and Opera Solutions. Both have been customers for many years, since before the recent mergers that made Actian a larger company. Both have used multiple parts of the Actian Analytics Platform as essential pieces of their own architectures since before the AAP really became a big data platform. Both have combined the Actian software with other cutting-edge technologies to create unique, innovative reusable analytics architectures. And both are highly successful, very smart companies that supply cutting-edge analytics solutions to other companies.
Autometrics is a SaaS-delivered, auto industry-specific provider of up-to-the-minute business intelligence and predictive analytics. They use Actian DataConnect, the Actian DataFlow-powered data profiling and de-duplication tools, and Actian Matrix. They put these pieces of the Actian Analytics Platform together with a lot of industry knowledge in a sophisticated cooperative cloud architecture that conquers the challenges of hundreds of messy, often duplicate, Web-based data sources. They take all that noise and turn it into key information that boosts the top-line revenue of a large number of big name auto industry companies. Autometrics’ business has grown by leaps and bounds the last decade or so that we’ve been working with them. And they’re still scaling up.
Opera Solutions is possibly the biggest data science consultancy in the world. If you’re wondering why brilliant data scientists are so hard to find, it’s because Opera Solutions hired them all. Opera Solutions was an early lighthouse customer of Actian DataFlow for high-speed data processing, and also an avid user of Actian Vector for super low-latency interactive data queries. Well before we were part of the same company, Opera Solutions saw the value of these two technologies working together.
Every analytics technology on the market talks about how fast they are, in this case at data crunching and query response, but Opera Solutions architected specifically for another advantage altogether. Reusability. When your business grows at the rate that Opera Solutions’ has grown, a fast one-off solution has limited value. Where Actian big data analytics technology really shines, especially in cooperative architectures that include modern technologies like Hadoop, is in the fast development and deployment time. Opera Solutions put a great deal of thought into creating an architecture that was not only capable of cutting through a lot of data noise to the essential signals fast, but doing it again and again in a wide variety of analytics use cases and customer environments.
Autometrics had the same inspiration. They focus on a single industry, but have created their architecture in such a way that as their customer needs (and numbers) expanded, they could expand right with them, without re-architecting.
I have watched as Autometrics has grown by leaps and bounds by thinking smart, and staying way ahead of the competition. The folks at Opera Solutions have presented at several Actian and other events, and each time I listen, I both learn and am inspired by the smart, innovative ways they’re solving the challenges of the Age of Data. So, with brilliant material like this to work with, I can’t wait to do my presentation next week. I’m in the last class slot on the last day, so if you’re going to be there, be sure and grab a late flight out. You don’t want to miss this.