7 Hot Trends in Business Intelligence

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This is a guest blog post by Marcus Borba (@marcusborba), the founder of Borba Consulting, a Business Intelligence and Performance Management consultancy located in Brazil. Marcus  has over 10 years of experience providing consulting services to designing and implementing business intelligence and performance management solutions. He also writes a blog called Business Intelligence News.

The Business Intelligence landscape has changed drastically over the past few years, with news concepts, approaches and tools. Here’s a high-level map of today’s hottest spots:

  • Mobile BI.  Smartphones and iPads are driving the development of better mobile BI applications.  Goal: Effective decision support–anytime, anywhere.  Insights: Computerworld surveys mobile BI.
  • Collaborative BI.  BI tools are gaining collaboration capabilities, like the integration of social media concepts or methods into a BI context, and the ability to embed live dashboards into blogs.  Goal: A self-service approach to Business Intelligence.  Insights: Spotfire discusses community collaboration and conducts a social bi poll.
  • Text Mining and Sentiment Analysis.  Mining unstructured data, such as emails, blogs, wikis and office documents, as well as social media outlets such as Twitter and Facebook, is increasingly important.  Goal: Tracking key trends and identifying opinions in real time.  Insights: CMS Wire sums up text mining.
  • In-Memory Analytics.  Falling RAM prices and increasing adoption of 64-bit computing have made in-memory analytics a practical reality.  Goal: High-performance applications that don’t wait on disk I/O.  Insights: Forrester blogs about in-memory.
  • Advanced Visualization. Data displays are increasingly complex and interactive.   Goal: Deliver information in a format that engages users.  Insights: Preview Business Dashboards:  A Visual Catalog on Google Books.
  • Agile BI.   Collaborative development, rapid prototyping, and working in an iterative, incremental and evolutionary approach can apply as well to BI as to any other kind of software project. Goal: Streamlined BI development and deployment.  Insights: Watch a webcast on Agile BI & Agile Data Services.
  • BI in the Cloud. The movement to cloud computing is reshaping the Business Intelligence landscape.  Goal: Reducing the operational costs of IT management and the infrastructure costs of IT projects—which frees up money for development and innovation.  Insights: Watch a webcast by James Kobielus, Senior Analyst at Forrester on BI in the Cloud: A self-service alternative to “Big BI”