Actian Newsletter - Q3 2012
Dear Actian Customers and Partners,
As we enter the second half of 2012, I believe this is a good opportunity to reflect on the successes we’ve seen in the first half of the year. On the product side, we released significant updates to all of our major product lines include the release of Vectorwise 2.5, Ingres 10S and OpenROAD 6.0. We augmented the executive team with the addition of Ahmed Ezzat, our new CTO, and Mark Milani, who joined as Senior Vice President of our Cloud Platform. We announced a number of strategic and exciting new partners and customers and delivered our first Vectorwise Appliance with Lenovo. We provided a sneak preview of our thinking on our next generation data platform for turning structured, unstructured and streaming data into real time business value. We even had our first new geospatial customer win for the Ingres 10S release.
Our calendar for the second half of the year is packed with many exciting deliverables including the first production deployments of Action Apps built on our Cloud Action Platform, a scale out solution for Vectorwise and a steady drumbeat of new customer and partner successes. Our goal continues to be to provide you with technologies and services to turn data into real business value, be it the resilience and stability of the Ingres technologies, the ultra high performance of Vectorwise, or the powerful business user tools of Action Apps.
Once again, I would like to thank you for your continued commitment and we look forward to sharing more of our successes with you.
CEO & President
Imagine being able to look at your data in a way that was more intuitive and easier to use. Even better, this new approach allowed you to visualize “connections” that would otherwise be difficult or impossible to make. And, what if you could incorporate your private data with publicly available data to provide an even deeper level of understanding and insight? Now, think of what that new insight could mean to your business – helping you identify new opportunities, minimize risk, and adjust pricing to maximize both sales and gross margins.
That is just one of the many benefits that Ingres 10S can provide. People often think of geospatial as mapping – which is one important aspect. Those maps can be many things – from road maps to traffic congestion monitoring to maps of things that may be important to your business such as a wide area network or a power grid. Maps can be very helpful by themselves, but when combined with your enterprise data they have the potential to be so much more.
Typical Business Intelligence (BI) systems have granularity to a city or zip (postal) code area. There are often several postal codes within a large city, so you can get a rough idea of what is happening and make assumptions based on that limited information. But, those assumptions could be costing you money. For example, by organizing that data by specific address you will likely see clusters within a postal code or city (possibly at an area where there are adjacent postal codes and the artificial separation of the data hides the true relationship). This new organization provides insight into your data that was previously unavailable. It also provides a new level of intelligence about that data.
Here is just one of many possible scenarios to help bring this concept to life.
Imagine that you work for an Insurance Company that offers both commercial and personal lines of insurance. Often those two businesses are separate, as is their claim data. So, being able to combine and overlap claims as simple color-coded dots on a map (one color for commercial policies and the other for personal policies) could show correlations. With the help of a GIS (geographic information system) dashboard you quickly see clusters of activity for both lines of business and can drill into that cluster to learn more. Is there a cause and effect relationship, such as a business that hosts dangerous activities (skiing, skating, rock climbing, etc. – all fun but potentially dangerous)? You may be able to make that determination quickly by a summary of claims (e.g., vandalism, theft, fire), but that might not be enough.
Now, consider that you could also include information on all registered business in the area (Safe Software’s FME tool is the perfect ETL solution for this type of situation). These are all businesses, not just your customers. When you expand your view slightly you could find that there is a nearby business that could be contributing to these problems (such as a movie theatre) during certain times of the day or days of the week. You have quickly made a correlation to a likely root cause, and can now make decisions that can save your company money.
What types of decisions? You could provide discounts to policy holders in those areas for adding lighting and security cameras. You could increase the policy fee for new businesses in that area. You could use that data to request additional police patrols during those specific days and times that are problematic. And, you could target businesses in the area that are not currently customers with offers to switch to your company (as they are likely paying a premium for past claims made). There are so many different things that you could do with your existing data that are extremely targeted at areas that will provide the greatest business impact. Even better, you now have a profile that can be used to identify other areas of risk and/or opportunity.
Opportunities like this exist with nearly every business. There are ways to leverage your data that truly create business value. And, you can do that quickly and inexpensively using Ingres 10S. This release of our time-tested and proven enterprise class relational database product provides support for many standard spatial tools such as Esri’s ArcGIS Desktop, Quantum GIS, and MapServer. With tools like these, it is now possible to quickly visualize your enterprise data spatially. We also have partners with pre-built GIS dashboards that are data driven and can be easily adapted to your business.
Interested in learning more about what Ingres 10S can do for your business? Please contact us to speak with someone on our team about creating more value from your existing data for your business.
In June, Actian hosted the annual UK Code Sprint over the weekend preceding the UK AUA event. This year’s event included participants from the US, Canada, the UK, Spain, Germany, Denmark and Holland. Details of our accomplishments can be found here. The Ingres Community version will be updated to include the features developed at the code sprint in the coming weeks.
The OpenROAD team was unable to participate in the UK Code Sprint due to other more pressing commitments; however we are investigating the feasibility of hosting an OpenROAD Code Sprint in Germany in the fall to coincide with the GIUA event in October. If you are interested in participating in this event, please contact email@example.com for details.
Action Apps automate business actions triggered by real-time changes in underlying data—for example, notifying a Sales Manager when a key deal slips in your CRM system. Work on Action Apps is proceeding apace, and we are now seeking early adopters for our first example of a vertical application built on the platform which will be Action Apps for SalesForce.com.
We will be sending out a separate mailer shortly providing more details of the program including a demo video. In the meantime, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you are a SalesForce.com user and would like to find out more about joining the early adopter program.
This past quarter saw the release of Vectorwise 2.5, which delivers on the promise of even faster performance to tackle Big Data problems. Among multiple new features, this version introduces major improvements in storage management. Visit here for more details on the features introduced in Vectorwise 2.5.
This past quarter also saw continued momentum in the uptake of Vectorwise, with Actian announcing multiple customer and partner wins. Also in Q2 Lenovo introduced an appliance with Vectorwise. This appliance enables customers to deploy a Big Data solution quickly and affordably. Look for more stories in the coming quarter from our customers and partners on how Actian and Vectorwise provide action and business value from data.
No quarter would be complete without another top TPC-H benchmark result, this time with Dell. Visit the TPC website for the latest results.
Ingres 10S was released in Q2 and includes a number of new features, the most significant of which is the new geospatial data types and functions, which allow geospatial/geographic data to be managed natively by Ingres. More details about these exciting capabilities are described in the article "The Power of Geospatial and Ingres 10S" above.
An OpenROAD 5.1 Service Pack (5.1.1) will be available across all supported platforms this quarter. This service pack includes bug fixes and new operating system support for some of the UNIX platforms.
OpenROAD 6.0, targeted for Windows, is now GA. OpenROAD 6.0 provides transparent Unicode support, enabling applications to handle single-byte, multi-byte, and UTF-8 data with little or no changes to existing code.
More information regarding OpenROAD 6.0 is available in this datasheet. OpenROAD 6.0 can be downloaded from http://esd.actian.com/product/OpenROAD/6.0 and the documentation is available at http://docs.actian.com/openroad/6.0. Future plans for OpenROAD can be found at OpenROAD 6.2 Roadmap.
Use Actian’s technical expertise to reduce your risk of ongoing operations by maintaining or improving the reliability of your Ingres or Vectorwise systems. Actian’s Enterprise Management Service (EMS) provides 24 x 7 x 365 proactive monitoring and event management of your mission critical Ingres and Vectorwise data services, including hardware and applications. This is a low cost, easily implemented solution that can automatically notify Actian (and/or your own support organisation) of any potential or actual service issues thereby enabling you to resolve them before there is any serious impact on your business.
We are seeing a strong level of uptake of both the entry-level service, where the customer reacts to alerts, and the ‘Business’ version, where Actian deals with issues for you. The service attracted a lot of interest at the recent Actian Users Association with both end users and ISV partners.
If you would like us to demonstrate what the Enterprise Management Service could do for you, then please contact us at email@example.com.
Actian Corporation is continually working to provide quality software and services to best meet the needs of our customers. In order to provide best-in-class software solutions, Actian has defined a predictable Support Lifecycle Policy to give you plenty of lead time to plan and manage your upgrade and release processes. In accordance with this policy, we are formally announcing the end of Actian Enterprise Support Services for the Ingres Database 9.3 product release for all platforms as of December 31, 2012.
This release was an interim release to address specific partner functionality until the functionality was made available in the next key GA release. As a result, it had a limited lifecycle originally intended to end in conjunction with the Ingres 10 release. Due to uptake, we continued ongoing Enterprise Support Services but are now ending those services. Ingres 9.3 will join previous versions of Actian releases as functionally stabilized with no further Enterprise Support Services.
If you have not already started to migrate to a newer release of the Ingres Database, please review the information and features for Ingres 10 & Ingres 10S.
Actian Corporation is changing the way people take action and make business decisions. Every day, all over the world, our bright, dynamic team is making our story of innovation and record breaking technology a reality. We are excited about our growth and want to continue to expand our team with talented, hard working, collaborative and innovative individuals.
We regularly advertise our open roles on our career page and through other social media channels and outside sources. If you are interested in a role or want to get more information, feel free to reach out to your contacts at Actian or our Human Resources department, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Actian offers a competitive compensation and benefit program and is an equal opportunity employer.
If you have questions about this newsletter, or items that you would like to see covered in a future edition, we encourage you to contact us at email@example.com.