SAS Prepares Hadoop-Powered In-Memory BI Platform
By Mark Dexter
10th February 2012

Analytics giant SAS is planning to step up competition in the business intelligence arena with a new high-performance platform that will hit on three of the hottest hot buttons in the data-analysis arena: big data, in-memory, and business analytics.

SAS executives said the planned hardware-ready software package will combine the scalability of the Hadoop Distributed File System (HDFS) and the in-memory processing speed of a RAM-intensive clustered blade server environment. The platform is said to offer rapid analytic insight into the types of routine, ad-hoc questions business analysts typically explore.

Plenty of BI products can deliver red, yellow, and green key performance indicators (KPIs) on dashboard displays, but the new platform will go further, said Greg Hodges, SAS's product management director for BI products, in an exclusive interview with InformationWeek. "This platform will be able to tell the user why the KPI is red by applying advanced analytics in a way that's easy for business analysts to digest," Hodges said.

For example, the platform will be able to find patterns and correlations among data, uncovering root causes without requiring PhD-level analysts, Hodges said. The key to ease of use is an ad-hoc data exploration interface that lets users drag and drop data sets onto a palate for anlaysis. The product then automatically choses the most appropriate chart or visualization depending on the sources and data types selected, Hodges said.

The new high-performance BI platform is expected to be released in the first half of 2012. SAS declined to offer competitive comparisons, but it would seem to answer in-memory competition from SAP Hana and Oracle Exalytics as well as in-memory-powered data-visualization and data-exploration capabilities from the likes of Tableau Software and Tibco Spotfire.

SAS stressed that it will not sell hardware. Rather, the software will be ready to run on commodity blade servers from any hardware vendor. Administrators will have a Web-based interface through which they will be able to point at existing data sources including relational databases and SAS repositories. From there the data is copied into HDFS, which serves strictly as a high-scale data storage layer. When data is requested, it's moved from HDFS into memory on each of the blades in the cluster. SAS calculations are performed in distributed fashion using SAS grid data-processing technology. No separate database will be required, according to Hodges.

SAS declined to divulge product names or details on the Hadoop software running behind the scenes. The new BI platform will extend the SAS high-performance product line, which already includes SAS High-Performance Computing analytics platform, which offers retail big-data price and assortment planning applications on EMC Greenplum and Teradata data warehousing platforms.

Read at source: Information Week

Comments

Currently there are no comments. Be the first to post one!

Post Comment

*
*
*

How to fix a broken leg

You break your leg, what do you do? You go to the hospital. Right? You get it X-rayed, plastered up and wait for it to heal. When it twinges and you say “ohh my leg ain’t half hurtin’ today” (in... Read More

Are tech tests useful or just lazy?

For many businesses that are hiring software and tech specialists they can see a mass influx of candidates. Tech tests or exercises can be a great way to cut down the noise and find the person with the right skills.... Read More

How NOT to answer interview questions

Interviews are the most important part of the job searching process; it is what stands between you and your dream role. If you have a bad interview or answers a question badly you might be putting your next role at... Read More

How AI is personalising marketing

There is no question that artificial intelligence, machine learning and automation is changing the marketing function in many businesses. For many consumer brands these technologies are now they most effective way of communication with a customer.  As AI continues to... Read More

Where should we send our newsletter?

Close