Wednesday, July 25, 2012

You've Got Big Data! Use it in the Cloud… Virtualized!

I get why Big Data is capitalized. It's even getting to the point where it could rate all caps, "BIG DATA." The part I don't get is why this is such a new big deal. Big Data has been around for a long time. Just think about the huge bodies of data that scientists have been gathering and analyzing just fine over the last who-knows-how many years.  The explosion of social media certainly brings a new dimension on rapidly growing, potentially valuable data, and poses the challenge of making it as valuable as the Big Data you already have.

The most valuable information in your company is probably not social media, but rather your corporate data. What about all that Big Data lurking in your corporate systems, data warehouses and across your multiple divisions? Your corporate Big Data is not like the scientific nor the Social Media Big Data:

o It's not in one place like the scientific data or the Social Media Cloud.
o It's across different organizations and geographies
o It looks different each place

I think of the Big Data focus as being on how to make it useful, not just for business analytics, but more importantly, to make it actionable to your elastic and agile enterprise. This means your solutions needs to be something that can be configured in very short time frames, which means eliminating custom coding. 

In order to be effective at leveraging your Big Data assets, integrating Big Data sources must be treated with streamlined transformation, federation, and virtualization, in an extremely unified architecture. This is necessary to provide the high performance requirement and is achieved by eliminating the classic steps through multiple components for extraction, transformation, staging to federate, and transforming again to align to the destination. It also requires the ability to address complex data manipulation with inline quality checks and error management.

o Access data from multiple disparate systems
o Leverage premises based and cloud based data virtually together in your own cloud
o Federate as data is being accessed from multiple sources, lookup tables
o Virtualize your data. Make it consumable by applications on premise or in the cloud live, virtually. This means that there is never a copy made of your data. (Of course, if you should want to actually send data, that's fine, too!)

Now, about that cloud…

Leveraging the cloud brings a host of opportunities not usually found within the walls of a corporate enterprise. The cloud brings an elasticity to try new architectures, explore new applications and meld your legacy data with Social and New Media for breakthrough business tools such as Predictive Analytics.

The trouble with the cloud is that we are concerned about maintaining the security of our data.  We feel this new technology should bring a tectonic shift in the way we think about integration to the cloud and in the value it can bring, without paying the generally accepted price.

To the best of my knowledge, there is only one product on the market that actually can do this: Stone Bond Technologies' Enterprise Enabler. With Enterprise Enabler you have the solution for Federating, Virtualizing and Leveraging your Big Data in the cloud.

o Your Data remains your data. Your data is never physically copied or placed to the cloud or anywhere along the way. It is accessed, transformed, aligned and virtualized in a single execution
o The data integration is end-user aware. The end user of the cloud application will see only the data he has authority to see.
o Your data is immediately actionable. Users of the cloud applications can update and add data on their screens, and the data is passed back to the source for updating, provided the user has authorization to do that.

A use-case example is a financial institution using this technology to supplement the data with on-premise information that needs to be seen by the loan personnel alongside the cloud data.