CEO Perspective: Future Trends in BI and Analytics
What technology must be part of your tool kit today, what technology has the greatest potential this year, and where are analytics and data management headed? Datometry’s CEO Mike Waas shares his perspective.
- By James E. Powell
- January 4, 2019
Mike Waas founded Datometry, Inc. in 2013 with the vision of redefining enterprise data management. Today he is the company’s CEO; he has held key engineering positions at Microsoft, Amazon, Greenplum, EMC, and Pivotal.
Given his varied and technical background, we wanted to learn where he thinks BI and analytics are headed this year.
Upside: What technology or methodology must be part of an enterprise’s data strategy if it wants to be competitive today? Why?
Mike Waas: Replatforming data into the cloud opens up a rich and rapidly expanding ecosystem of processing techniques from conventional analytics to ML, from reporting to advanced visualization. In the cloud, all of these become readily available and new ones are added continuously. As a result, we’re seeing a true democratization of data processing. Mid-range and even small enterprises have access to the same tools as the Fortune 100.
However, the foundation of this new stack are cloud databases and cloud data warehouses. Replatforming to those is the very first step: enterprises must adopt these technologies quickly or risk being left behind.
What is the single biggest challenge enterprises face today? How do most enterprises respond (and is it working)?
CIOs struggle with building out the new stack in the cloud era. Conventional wisdom has it that an organization must overcome two major problems to step into the future. First, make a “down payment” in the form of -- often exorbitant -- switching cost to re-tool all data-consuming processes. Second, motivate and excite the folks charged with the delivery of new technology to leave their comfort zone and step up to the challenge of replatforming.
We currently see enterprises around the world and across verticals grapple with these challenges as they aspire to move to the cloud.
This is a significant challenge but also an enormous opportunity for IT leaders if they can prove they have the business acumen to move the enterprise forward!
What one emerging technology are you most excited about and think has the greatest potential? What’s so special about this technology?
I’m most excited about adaptive data virtualization, a new type of virtualization that decouples the application from the database. Adaptive data virtualization solves what might best be described as the last-mile problem of data usage. Instead of having to rewrite an application to make its highly valuable, and often complex, business logic work with a new database, Adaptive data virtualization lets applications written for one database simply run natively on a new one.
This technology is projected to upend the database industry altogether. More important, it gives CIOs and IT leaders and their organizations an incredibly powerful platform. Not only can they make the replatforming happen at a fraction of time and cost; adaptive data virtualization becomes their ultimate risk-mitigation strategy while moving the enterprise into this new era of data processing.
Is there a new technology in data and analytics that is creating more challenges than most people realize? How should enterprises adjust their approach to it?
In the database field we have witnessed several major revolutions that questioned the status quo fundamentally. Each time a new way of thinking has ultimately made database technology better, more cost effective, and better suited to new business problems. Instead of displacing database technology they have actually advanced it.
Enterprises need to focus on data instead of technology and simply avoid getting distracted.
Where do you see analytics and data management headed in 2019 and beyond? What’s just over the horizon that we haven’t heard much about yet?
This year promises to be the year of the cloud database. For enterprises it is critical to lay the foundation of their cloud stack sooner rather than later. We have seen cloud service providers and vendors pave the way over the past years. Now it is time to start executing.
Over the next decade, the entire database market is expected to be replatformed to the cloud. Naturally, the ability to make this move will determine winners and losers in every vertical of the economy. The importance of this particular transformation -- for the enterprise but also for the careers of IT leaders -- cannot be overstated.
[Editor’s Note: Waas holds an M.S. in Computer Science from University of Passau, Germany, and a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Mike has authored or co-authored more than 35 publications and holds 24 patents on data management.
Datometry Hyper-Q is a software-only solution to replatform database applications written for on-premises data warehouses to the cloud. It eliminates the need for time-intensive, costly, and risk-laden database migration projects. By preserving applications as-is, Datometry helps enterprises move to the cloud and benefit from cloud databases quickly. The company also offers integrated products that support enterprises in their journey from discovery and assessment pertaining to their current data warehouse to schema and data transfer systems to accelerate the implementation of cloud data warehouse strategies.]
James E. Powell is the editorial director of TDWI, including research reports, the Business Intelligence Journal, and Upside newsletter. You can contact him
via email here.