1. By bringing our BI service to customers who already prefer to use cloud services, and by being available in their preferred cloud instead of forcing them into our cloud; andAt Jaspersoft, we ultimately see our cloud-based service as vital to reaching the broadest possible audience with just the right amount of reporting and analytics (not too much, not too little). The post-transactional cloud will be fueled by cloud-originated data and the need to deliver cleverly-designed intelligence inside this environment will be more important than ever.
2. By enabling elegant, affordable, embeddable reporting and analysis within cloud-based applications, so those who deliver this software can include intelligence inside their transactional applications.
Monday, April 8, 2013
Tuesday, November 13, 2012
So the interface techniques and features we deliver are constrained based on key web client technologies, especially HTML. The trade-offs we’ve lived with in the past, though, are now essentially eliminated, as a new generation of HTML5 ushers in the consistent, advanced visualization and interaction we’ve long-wanted, while allowing us to maintain our pure web-based client delivery model. Satisfaction. Jaspersoft 5 is more than a new pretty face. We have delivered a completely new HTML5 visualization engine that allows a new-level of rich graphics and interaction, but we’re also providing a host of new and more advanced back-end services that make Jaspersoft 5 more surely the intelligence inside apps and business processes. In total, Jaspersoft 5 includes six major new features.
1. Data Exploration
To enable everyone to become a more capable analyst, the Jaspersoft 5 platform includes stunning HTML5 charts, a new dimensional zoom tool (for exploring data at more or less levels of detail), and the ability to simply change or customize charts and tables to suit a particular type of thought or analysis.
2. Data Virtualization
Some reporting and analysis applications are best delivered without moving or aggregating data. Instead, the query engine should virtualize those data views and enable reports, dashboards and analytic views to include data from all necessary sources. Jaspersoft 5 includes an advanced data virtualization engine so that building advanced analysis using practically any data source is straightforward, including Big Data sources.
3. Columnar In-Memory Engine
The JasperReports server has supported in-memory operations for several years. Jaspersoft 5 takes this to a new level with improved performance, features, and now with support for up to a full Terabyte of in-memory data. This means that billions of rows of data can be explored at memory speeds with our new Server.
4. Enhanced Analytics
To give the power user analyst another reason to use Jaspersoft, we’re now including greater analytic performance, new analytic features (e.g., conditional formatting, relative date filtering, and cross-tab sorting), consistently rich visualization (see #1 above) and broadened access to multi-dimensional data sources. By supporting the latest XML/A standard, we gain certified access to Microsoft SQL Analysis Services (MSAS) data sources in addition to the traditional Mondrian. More power and greater choice equals greater usage.
5. Improved Administration and Monitoring
To make the lives easier of those who administer and manage a JasperReports Server, we’re now using our own tool to make our Server smarter and simpler. We’ve designed a set of best-practice, interactive reports that display system health and report on the most important elements of usage. Then, we streamlined the installation and upgrade process, so that getting started and staying up-to-date has never been easier. Together, these improvements are good for our customers and our technical team who supports them.
6. PHP Support
Scripting tools are now the most popular for web application development. The PHP community needs more advanced reporting and analysis tools to make their applications more data-driven. By extending the JasperReports Server API to now include PHP support (via RESTful web service wrappers), we’ve taken an important first step toward supporting this fast-growing world beyond Java. Welcome to Jaspersoft.
Jaspersoft 5 is poised to deliver self-service BI to help many more users answer their own questions, not just because of the beautiful new HTML5 graphing and interaction engine, but because it is designed to be highly embeddable (into apps and business processes) and, maybe most importantly, because it scales so powerfully and affordably. Putting reporting and analytics into the hands of far more users requires this fundamental reset of the BI formula. This is Jaspersoft 5.
I invite you to learn more about Jaspersoft 5 here
Friday, July 27, 2012
I’ve recently offered a brief article that seeks to dispel the “Top 5 Myths About Big Data.” Published last month on Mashable. The article has garnered some great comments with the most completewritten by IBM’s James Kobielus. James improves and amplifies several of my major points. I hope you’ll join the conversation.
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Rather than address my main points here, I encourage you to read my post at the TDWI website and then add your comments and thoughts here.
Cloud BI = BI for SaaS + BI for PaaS
I note that the cloud as a transformational infrastructure will drive big use of BI for SaaS (on-demand analytical applications) and BI for PaaS (application development and deployment in the cloud). I am less bullish on SaaS BI (on-demand, general-purpose BI in the cloud) because I believe growth will continue to be fueled by BI embedded in data-driven applications, rather than delivered in any standalone use.
We’re constantly tuning the Jaspersoft website on this topic, building out content that seeks to explain, educate and amplify the technological and business benefits of BI in the Cloud. One important point left out of my TDWI post describes Jaspersoft’s focus on and success in BI for PaaS (platform-as-a-service).
Recently, Jaspersoft has been very active in BI for PaaS. We are working with all the major PaaS providers to ensure our BI platform is available within these new cloud-based development and deployment environments. Just last month, Jaspersoft announced an important partnership with Red Hat, making our BI server available immediately in the OpenShift (public cloud) and CloudForms (private cloud) environments. Then, Jaspersoft produced a blog post and video to highlight its support of VMWare’s CloudFoundry PaaS environment, with a more formal announcement pending. Overall, our head of Product & Alliances summed it up best:
“Jaspersoft’s intention is to be the de facto standard in BI for PaaS, enabling the broadest community of software developers to use our tools in their favorite cloud environment,” said Karl Van den Bergh, Vice President of Product & Alliances at Jaspersoft. “We are uniquely positioned to capitalize on this shift of application development to the cloud with our modern architecture, the world’s largest BI community building data-driven applications, and our open source model.”
Through my recent TDWI article and this post, my goal is to clarify the cloudy definitions around Cloud BI, the important pitfalls already witnessed, and the progress we can point to as a sense of optimism for what will be a bright Cloud BI future.
Chief Executive Officer
Thursday, March 1, 2012
I’ve previously discussed the different classes of data source technologies that can legitimately be used to harness (or tame) big data. Hadoop is one of those technologies, as the most popular software framework associated with this rising trend. Others include NoSQL databases, MPP data stores and even ETL/Data Integration approaches (for moving Big Data by the batch into some more usable format). Each of these technologies align with an appropriate use-case that makes more understandable the variety of products emerging in this world of Big Data.
For simplicity, I like to talk about three popular approaches to connecting to and making use of Big Data for business intelligence reporting and analysis.
Interactive Exploration – the most dynamic because it involves native connectivity directly from the BI tool to the Big Data source and can offer results in near-real-time. Hadoop HBase, Hadoop HDFS, and MongoDB are just three of the most popular data sources to which direct connection would be an advantage.
Direct Batch Reporting – an important and mainstream approach (especially in this early market of Big Data) that relies on tried-and-true SQL access to Big Data. Hadoop Hive is the best known example, but Cassandra offers CQL access that delivers similar results and functionality.
Batch ETL – using extract, transform and load techniques to create a more usable subset of the Big Data is also popular, especially when the insight being sought is less urgent, probably in the order of hours or days after data capture. Most every ETL tool has now been improved to connect to and transform Big Data. Some even integrate nicely with underlying Hadoop technologies (like Pig), making the data steward’s life potentially simpler.
Sometime last year, it occurred to me that Jaspersoft is in a unique position with regard to Big Data. Because of Jaspersoft’s data-agnostic architecture, we’ve quickly offered a broad variety of native Big Data connectors, many of which have been available for more than one year (for free download) . . . and because of our large, growing community of developers (we have more than 260,000 registered community members, growing at about 6,000/month at the time of this writing), we have important data about Big Data. This realization led us to the Big Data Index.
Big Data Index
We’ve tracked the downloads of our Big Data connectors over the last year, charting the ups and downs with each, corresponding to the relative rise and fall of their popularity. Over this time, we’ve seen more than 15,000 downloads, so our view is pretty good. Here’s a static version of the latest data for the four most popular Big Data connector downloads:
During the course of the past year, the Hadoop technologies (HBase & Hive combined) proved the most popular. The fastest growing and the leader at the moment is MongoDB (from 10gen). Cassandra holds a solid and consistent fourth position (which should benefit DataStax, the commercial company behind Cassandra). Many other Big Data connectors are tracked as well, with a dynamic chart updated monthly.
As interest in Big Data grows, so will the potential uses for these technologies that are designed to map this data to decisions and insights. At the moment, I’m just content knowing I have a front-row seat via the Big Data Index.
We’re at the very beginning of this era, which will surely be reliant on more data than we could barely fathom just ten years ago. This is why your thoughts and comments on this topic are appreciated.
Chief Executive Officer
Thursday, January 26, 2012
Because this article represents just a fraction of my thoughts on this matter, I’d like to revisit the basic premise, which is captured in the excerpt below, and then describe how some of my current experiences at Jaspersoft corroborate this newly posited IT-driven economic theory.
“Classical economic theory describes three primary factors, or inputs, to the production of any good or service: land, labor, and capital. These factors facilitate production, but do not become part of the end product (as a raw material would). While these three factors have been much discussed and extended at different points in economic evolution, I believe that they, in any of the advanced economies of the world today, are vastly antiquated.
Sometime even prior to this new millennium, the primary factors of production have now assuredly become: Time, Information and Capital. I submit that the primary relevance of land and labor has diminished, not completely but measurably, from their prominence during agrarian and industrial economic times. In a sense, owning land and employing lots of people no longer highly correlate to a valuable and successful enterprise. Although in certain industries these two factors will remain prominent (think mining and energy production, for example). By and large, land and labor have yielded to two more important factors – time and information.”
I was very pleased when Silicon Angle asked to speak with me about my background and the thoughts that led to this newly posited IT-driven economic theory as well as the contributions Jaspersoft is making to this new economic landscape. I discussed how Jaspersoft’s mission is precisely to help its customers compete on the basis of time and information.
“From its very start, Jaspersoft was determined to build and advance the industry’s most modern, flexible, and scalable Business Intelligence (BI) software. To do this, we consciously chose the open source model of development and distribution, believing that the power and principles of community involvement and broad usage would prove continually more valuable (and it has). We knew time would be important to our business model to rapidly compete in a crowded software category.”
Jaspersoft focuses on delivering its modern BI software to those who are best suited to create value from it. We call these individuals “BI Builders” because they possess a powerful confluence of knowledge about data, analytics, and business (process, function, industry, etc.) that truly yields new value from insight. The result is thousands of commercially available software applications that include Jaspersoft technology. These software applications power the world and deliver faster, more effective insight into data. Jaspersoft’s open source model affords these applications very high quality reporting and analytic capabilities at a very low cost, so our customers create new economic value, arguably, where it could not have been created in the past.
In many ways, the BI Builder is the real hero in the equation that determines how companies can compete more effectively based on time and information. Jaspersoft simply becomes their partner and enabler.
Here’s a chance to continue this dialog at the intersection of economic theory and information technology. I offer an open invitation for comments. Your thoughts are appreciated.
Chief Executive Officer
Tuesday, November 8, 2011
I’ve been writing about how important it is to build and deliver big data projects that can succeed, because the opportunity to do so has never been better and the business reasons to do so have never been more compelling. Seems like each week, more tools and products are available to make big, complex data types useful for a variety of business purposes.
But, what about the unforgiving worlds of natural language and semi-structured data sources? Is there any hope to generate insight from them, even in this new big data world?
It’s one thing to make sense of more traditionally structured big data sources; its quite another to parse natural language and complex, industry-specific data types. To quickly understand the difficulties of these data environments, I recommend Brett Sheppard’s excellent blog post on this topic.
Informatica’s HParser to the Rescue
Enter Informatica’s HParser, announced last week. Now, accessing and then making sense of practically any data type has just become far simpler. You can learn more about this important new Informatica product here. HParser is a parsing technology that can run inside a MapReduce job and which allows users to structure the unstructured or semi-structured data in Hadoop and ready it for analysis. This takes a lot of the complexity out of creating custom scripts, which is what developers need to do today. HParser is available in both a community and commercial edition and features a visual development environment that, when combined with its myriad out-of-the-box parsers for semi-structured industry standard data, can eliminate up to 80% of the time it takes to turn this data into insight.
Integration with Jaspersoft
I’m thrilled that Jaspersoft has collaborated with Informatica to deliver rich reporting and analysis of natural language and semi-structured data, working directly with Informatica’s new HParser. Through integration with Jaspersoft’s BI server, creating any variety of reports and analyses is drag-and-drop easy. You can learn more about our work together through this brief video.
In short, we’ve worked with Informatica to ensure the Jaspersoft BI platform can provide analytic access to Hadoop for anyone who needs to access and understand data – whether its an executive who wants a summarized dashboard or a manager who needs a detailed operational report. And, our BI platform can handle both batch processing (through Hive) as well as direct, ad hoc and near real-time access to this data, which we uniquely provide through direct HBase access. That should satisfy even the most analytic end user.
Now there’s no reason not to consider any big data source. Toward the goal of genuinely harnessing the opportunity all this new (big) data represents, it’s good to see Informatica and Jaspersoft help lead the way. Your comments are appreciated.
Chief Executive Officer