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From the Editor

As a new year begins, enterprises begin anew. New projects are approved and implemented;
new budgets are put in place; and new users ask new questions of their business
intelligence systems. At the Business Intelligence Journal, we’re also interested in “new.”

Hugh Watson asks a fundamental question: Is it truly new or just vendor spin? From
his experience, based on over 30 years in the field, the Journal’s Senior Editor offers a
short list of what is truly new, even revolutionary, in improving the usefulness of business
intelligence in the enterprise.

As business environments change (thanks to mergers or new regulations), there’s a
strong demand for new business strategies. To keep BI solutions and business needs
aligned, there’s also a new emphasis on data integration, which Anupam Manglik and
Vivek Mehra explore.

Starting a new business performance management project? Done poorly, Craig Schiff
points out, BPM projects can be an expensive (and highly visible) fiasco. To help you
avoid such mistakes, the author offers several best practices, from planning and dashboards
to project pacing.

Stephen Few sheds new light on dashboard designs, showing us what characteristics
make a dashboard effective. “If it’s worth communicating, it’s worth communicating
well,” Few notes. His discussion provides the keys you need to present data in entirely
new and valuable ways.

Pivot tables aren’t new, of course, but a new study calls their use into question: nearly
half of participants in the trial derived the wrong answers when using them. Peter
O’Donnell pleads for new and better interfaces for OLAP-based systems.

Also in this issue, Brian Hether explains how key financial control processes in a billing
system can find new uses—in data warehousing. Our case study focuses on what happens
to a data warehouse when an enterprise adopts a new structure. We explore the new and
exciting world of text mining with an example from the airline industry, Ronald Gage
Allan looks at the new use of an entity-relationship diagram as a query tool, and this
month’s experts tackle the integration of knowledge management and data warehousing.

As always, we’re interested in your comments and what new things you’re doing. Please
send me your feedback: [email protected].

James E. Powell
is the editor-in-chief of the Business Intelligence Journal.
[email protected]

About the Author

James E. Powell is the editorial director of the Business Intelligence Journal and BI This Week newsletter. You can contact him here.

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