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What's trending in cloud and data?

JY Pook, Vice President, Asia-Pacific, Tableau | Sept. 8, 2015
Business intelligence (BI) and analytics users are urning to cloud data warehousing technologies, blurring the lines between where data is stored and where it is being analysed.

This vendor-written piece has been edited by Executive Networks Media to eliminate product promotion, but readers should note it will likely favour the submitter's approach.

JY Pook, Tableau
Photo: JY Pook

Cloud computing is great, theoretically at least. With cloud, we get to extend our IT platform beyond our on-premise infrastructure, and we get to access applications, data and storage over the Internet, as and when we need it. Highly scalable, lower cost and no hassle.

It is no wonder that we are seeing almost everything being offered over the cloud. Some call this the trend of "Whatever-as-a-Service (XaaS)." This includes data related services like cloud data management, which is evolving.

Similar to how Database-as-a-Service (DaaS) platforms have become viable options that are fully or partly supplementing in-house databases these days, many business intelligence (BI) and analytics users are also turning to cloud data warehousing technologies, blurring the lines between where data is stored and where it is being analysed.

However, before we let all this 'cloud' our judgement, let's see what is really driving this dynamic shift in cloud and data.

Attitudes towards the cloud has changed
It used to be that business users and groups within enterprises would turn to the cloud applications to bypass IT roadblocks. These days, IT is often the chief sponsor for transitioning to the cloud.

The attitude of IT teams towards cloud has definitely changed in recent years. Their concern early on was understandable as the single most important consideration with cloud is security. The thought of having everything running from outside the firewall would be uncomfortable.

These days, cloud vendors provide 24/7 support, with scaling, testing and applying patches quickly — sometimes even faster than IT. Naturally, IT departments have started to take this opportunity to get out of the business of setting up and maintaining applications for users, and are focusing on more strategic initiatives like prototyping cloud data ecosystems and enabling self-service analytics.

Little difference between cloud analytics and data analytics
As enterprises start to adopt a more hybrid data architecture, they are also demanding that analytics vendors support both cloud data and on-premise data. Currently, many vendors, including Tableau, offer customers the choice of connecting to their data in the cloud or working with data on-premise. It is likely that some users do not even need to care whether their data is sitting on-premise or in the cloud.

'In-house' clouds are moving outdoors
Hosted environments offered by Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) providers are becoming a real alternative to setting up physical servers when enterprises want to set up or extend their 'in-house' cloud.


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