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Taneja Blog / Big Data

Should Big Data Become An IT Service? Consider Pentaho v5 Business Analytics

All signs point to the next 12 months as when we think the bulk of the market will get around to actually tackling big data opportunities rather than talking about them. One of the enablers we think has been better platforms and friendlier toolsets (e.g. virtual Hadoop, SQL-like queries). Another is that analytics offerings keep getting better.  Pentaho has just released their commercial 5.0 version, and what has been a cool (i.e. open source based) BI solution for ETL, OLAP, and reporting/dashboard delivery now has a slick user friendly interface and a ton of big data integration built-in, not just bolted on.

It's hard to describe UI improvements in words, so check that out yourself directly. Just know that it's significantly improved and is going to offer some competition to more expensive solutions. But it's the big data parts we are excited about most. One of the things they've managed to do is create a way to blend big data with other data sources dynamically. Instead of extracting a set of data out of big data into a data warehouse or data mart, you can know create a live data source that at query time extracts from big data solutions (and combines with all the other things that Pentaho Data Integration (PDI) supports). PDI is basically providing visual "MapReduce" programming. This makes PDI more of a "data service" builder, including big data services, than just an ETL solution.

Some other improvements for Pentaho big data support (and we suppose other data too) include checkpointing, roll back, and restart capabilities. I'll also point out that you can leverage just about any NoSQL and even MongoDB databases (you can sample docs to generate metadata for reporting,etc.), if your developers have gone that direction. And even cloudy things like AWS Redshift can be folded into the scheme.

So this makes me think that IT shops should be standing up Pentaho as a foundational BI service platform. It's gone beyond ETL, it has broad integration and improved usability, and its sitting at the crossroads of all the data you might have. It seems an easy way to unleash some analytical creativity and start to achieve those big data visions.

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  • Premiered: 09/13/13
  • Author: Mike Matchett
Topic(s): Pentaho Big Data ETL OLAP

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