What Does Big Data Mean To You?


New Zealand  ::  6 July 2012

Corina Oliver
SQL Product Manager
Microsoft New Zealand

What does Big Data Mean to you?

There has been interesting media coverage about the data explosion and the growing importance of roles like the Data Scientist recently. One of the most common definitions of big data talks about the three v's: volume, velocity and variety. Data sets are becoming so large and/or diverse that you need new ways to deal with them. Volume means the massive amount of data generated and collected by organisations; velocity refers to the speed at which the data must be analyzed; and variety means the vast array of different types of data that is collected. Microsoft solutions are designed to address all three dimensions of big data with the analytical tools required to make sense of it all.

Check out one company's success with big data by watching this video about how Klout leverages Hadoop and Microsoft BI technologies to manage big data. Afterwards, join our discussion on big data and how NZ companies can benefit on the Microsoft New Zealand Business Intelligence Professionals Group on LinkedIn. Be sure to play with the technology yourself by downloading an evaluation copy of SQL Server 2012. Finally, don't miss the Business Intelligence Academy, a TechEd pre-conference event in Auckland and Wellington.

Immersive Insight, Wherever you are:

However you define ‘Big Data’ in your organisation the core objective is to gain insight out of your information. You might not be a Data Scientist but expectations from both technical and business users are that information is easily available and presented and in a way that allows users to collaborate. Microsoft delivers Business Analytics as part of the world’s most widely used productivity tools in Microsoft Office so that organisations can empower all users with self-service capabilities through familiar tools designed with these increasing user expectations in mind.

Microsoft enables immersive insight with rapid data exploration and collaboration with PowerPivot and Power View, delivered through Excel and SharePoint. PowerView, generally available with SQL Server 2012, is a highly interactive, browser-based data exploration, visualization, and presentation experience for users of all levels—from business executives to information workers. Now anyone can create a report in just seconds, transform the “shape” of data with a single click, add powerful timed animation sequences to quickly identify trends or anomalies, and make a more convincing case through rich presentation from the insights they discover on any data. See demos and build your own report on one Click BI.

Rapid data access is necessary for effective data exploration and interactivity. Microsoft SQL Server 2012 provides a generational leap in performance with the new xVelocity in-memory technologies allowing typical improvements of 10X-100X for Analytics and DW. xVelocity In-Memory technology is built into the platform and available on the desktop with a PowerPivot, in the analysis engine with SQL Server 2012 Analysis Service, and for Data Warehousing with SQL Server 2012 Data Warehousing. Microsoft is the only vendor that makes true in-memory technology available as part of a complete data platform, saving you the expense of dedicated in-memory appliance solution.

Microsoft is also providing IT administrators with the insight and oversight they need through tools for monitoring and managing user created content, dramatically streamlining compliance without hampering user agility and creativity.

Connecting to the World’s Data:

The more data available, the more opportunity there is for deep understanding and insight. Consider converting raw data into useful information through data transformation and advanced analytics, and mashups with external data.

With the release of SQL Server 2012, Microsoft provides a complete Enterprise Information Management (EIM) suite built with data enrichment in mind. You can utilize out-of the-box tools, such as SQL Server Integration Services and Data Quality Services for data transformation and cleansing. Master Data Services continues to make it easier to manage master data structures (such as dimensions and hierarchies). The new release introduces the Excel MDS Add-In which facilitates data management and maintenance. Also new to this release is Data Quality Services, helping to improve data quality and providing connectivity to 3rd party reference data available on the Windows Azure Marketplace. This aides in reliably profiling, cleansing, and matching your data.

Any Data, Any Size, Anywhere

A modern data management platform that handles data of all types and scale will enable you to realise the value of big data. Microsoft offers an integrated platform for managing data whether it’s structured data in relational databases, unstructured data with Hadoop, or streaming data with StreamInsight. We bring the simplicity of Windows to Hadoop, extend your data warehouse with Hadoop and offer the elastic scale of the cloud to Big Data.

You can gain Windows simplicity and manageability for Hadoop with simplified setup and management, enhanced security and great performance. You can install and configured Hadoop on Windows in under three hours instead of days or weeks for Hadoop on Linux. In addition, the Hadoop based service of Windows Azure dramatically simplifies deployment since customers don’t have to install Hadoop locally can deploy a Hadoop cluster on Windows Azure in under 10 minutes!

Other Resources

There are a lot of other resources online and coming soon with Tech Ed. We’re even announced a Business Intelligence Academy as a pre-course for TechEd! Register today to reserve your place in Auckland or Wellington.

Other handy resources:

- Get answers to your technical questions about SQL Server for implementation, development, and other topics with the Microsoft Big Data Solution Datasheet (PDF), Microsoft Big Data Solution Brief (PDF), and SQL Server Parallel Data Warehouse Connectors for Apache Hadoop (PDF).

- Learn how SQL Server 2012 provides customers with large-scale data warehousing and analytical solutions backed by IT management and insights in the SQL Server 2012: What's New Breakthrough Insight whitepaper.

- Watch this video: Introduction to the Hadoop on Azure Interactive JavaScript Console

- Check out the Microsoft Business Intelligence website and the Microsoft SQL Server website.



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