Welcome!

Big Data Journal Authors: Liz McMillan, Kevin Benedict, Pat Romanski, Michael Bushong, Elizabeth White

Related Topics: Virtualization, Java, SOA & WOA, Big Data Journal, SDN Journal

Virtualization: Article

Take Big Advantage of Your Data

A fresh look at data virtualization

Last July, I wrote Data Virtualization Q&A: What's It All About, an ambitious article that attempted to address the topic of data virtualization from numerous angles including use cases, business benefits, and technology.

Since then, with the continued rapid expansion of big data and analytics, as well as data virtualization technology advances, my 360 degree view of data virtualization has evolved.

Data Rich, Information Poor
As I think about data virtualization today, the big data and analytics challenge that data virtualization best addresses is helping enterprises take advantage of their data.

In other words, enterprises today are data rich with loads of enterprise, cloud, third party and Big Data.  But they remain information poor.

In this context, let's consider the role of data virtualization with ten, back-to-the-basics questions and answers.

What is Data Virtualization?
Data virtualization is an agile data integration approach organizations use to gain more insight from their data.

Unlike data consolidation or data replication, data virtualization integrates diverse data without costly extra copies and additional data management complexity.

With data virtualization, you respond faster to ever changing analytics and BI needs, fast-track your data management evolution and save 50-75% over data replication and consolidation.

Why Use Data Virtualization?
With so much data today, the difference between business leaders and also-rans is often how well they leverage their data. Significant leverage equals significant business value, and that's a big advantage over the competition.

Data virtualization provides instant access to all the data you want, the way you want it.

Enterprise, cloud, Big Data, and more, no problem!

What Are the Benefits of Data Virtualization?
With data virtualization, you benefit in several important ways.

  • Gain more business insights by leveraging all your data - Empower your people with instant access to all the data they want, the way they want it.
  • Respond faster to your ever changing analytics and BI needs - Five to ten times faster time to solution than traditional data integration.
  • Fast-track your data management evolution - Start quickly and scale successfully with an easy-to-adopt overlay to existing infrastructure.
  • Save 50-75% over data replication and consolidation - Data virtualization's streamlined approach reduces complexity and saves money.

Who Uses Data Virtualization?
Data virtualization is used by your business and IT organizations.

  • Business Leaders - Data virtualization helps you drive business advantage from your data.
  • Information Consumers - From spreadsheet user to data scientist, data virtualization provides instant access to all the data you want, the way you want it.
  • CIOs and IT Leaders - Data virtualization's agile integration approach lets you respond faster to ever changing analytics and BI needs and do it for less.
  • CIOs and Architects - Data virtualization adds data integration flexibility so you can successfully evolve your data management strategy and architecture.
  • Integration Developers - Easy to learn and highly productive to use, data virtualization lets you deliver more business value sooner.

How Does Data Virtualization Work?
Data virtualization's business views provide instant access to the data your business users require, while shielding them from IT's complexity.

  • Develop - Your IT staff uses data virtualization's rich data analysis, design and development tools to build the business views (also known as data services).
  • Run - When your business users run a report or refresh a dashboard, data virtualization's high-performance query engine accesses the data sources and delivers the exact information requested.
  • Manage - Data virtualizations management, monitoring, security and governance functions ensure security, reliability and scalability.

Data virtualization vendor products such as the Composite Data Virtualization Platform provide all these capabilities in a complete and unified offering.

When to Use Data Virtualization?
You can use data virtualization to enable a wide range of information solutions including:

When Not to Use Data Virtualization?
Data virtualization is not the answer to every data integration problem.  Sometimes data consolidation in a warehouse or mart, along with ETL or ELT is a better solution for a particular use case.  And sometimes a hybrid mix is the right answer.

You can use a Data Integration Strategy Decision Tool to help you decide when to use data virtualization, data consolidation or perhaps a hybrid combination.

What is the Business Case for Data Virtualization?
Data virtualization has a compelling business case. The following drivers make data virtualization a "must have" for any large organization today.

  • Profit Growth - Data virtualization delivers the information your organization requires to increase revenue and reduce costs.
  • Risk Reduction - Data virtualization's up-to-the-minute business insights help you manage business risk and reduce compliance penalties.  Plus data virtualization's rapid development and quick iterations lower your IT project risk.
  • Technology Optimization - Data virtualization improves utilization of existing server and storage investments. And with less storage required, hardware and governance savings are substantial.
  • Staff Productivity - Data virtualization's easy-to-use, high-productivity design and development environments improve your staff effectiveness and efficiency.
  • Time-to-Solution Acceleration - Your data virtualization projects are completed faster so business benefits are derived sooner. Lower project costs are an additional agility benefit.

How to Deploy Data Virtualization?
You can start your data virtualization adoption with specific projects that address immediate information needs.

You can also deploy data virtualization in a more enterprise-wide manner, with common semantics, shared objects and architecture, and an Integration Competency Center.

Which Vendor Should I Select?
If you are like most, you would prefer to go with data virtualization market leader.  But how do you define the market leader

Is it the one with the most mature product?  For example, one data virtualization vendor has spent a decade delivering nearly 400 man years of R&D, six million lines of code and millions of hours of operational deployment.

Is it the one with the most installations?  For example the same vendor is used by nearly two hundred of world's largest organizations

Is it the one with them most domain knowledge?  This same vendor's data virtualization thought leadership assets demonstrate the expertise they can bring to bear for you. These include:

Conclusion
With so many new opportunities from Big Data, analytics and more, today's challenge is how to take big advantage. This article suggests that data virtualization can be that path, and provides answers to key questions about data virtualization. The time is now.

More Stories By Robert Eve

Robert Eve is the EVP of Marketing at Composite Software, the data virtualization gold standard and co-author of Data Virtualization: Going Beyond Traditional Data Integration to Achieve Business Agility. Bob's experience includes executive level roles at leading enterprise software companies such as Mercury Interactive, PeopleSoft, and Oracle. Bob holds a Masters of Science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a Bachelor of Science from the University of California at Berkeley.

Latest Stories from Big Data Journal
Cisco on Wedesday announced its intent to acquire privately held Metacloud. Based in Pasadena, Calif., Metacloud deploys and operates private clouds for global organizations with a unique OpenStack-as-a-Service model that delivers and remotely operates production-ready private clouds in a customer's data center. Metacloud's OpenStack-based cloud platform will accelerate Cisco's strategy to build the world's largest global Intercloud, a network of clouds, together with key partners to address cu...
I write and study often on the subject of digital transformation - the digital transformation of industries, markets, products, business models, etc. In brief, digital transformation is about the impact that collected and analyzed data can have when used to enhance business processes and workflows. If Amazon knows your preferences for particular books and films based upon captured data, then they can apply analytics to predict related books and films that you may like. This improves sales. T...
Technology is enabling a new approach to collecting and using data. This approach, commonly referred to as the “Internet of Things” (IoT), enables businesses to use real-time data from all sorts of things including machines, devices and sensors to make better decisions, improve customer service, and lower the risk in the creation of new revenue opportunities. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Dave Wagstaff, Vice President and Chief Architect at BSQUARE Corporation, will discuss the real...
IoT is still a vague buzzword for many people. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Mike Kavis, Vice President & Principal Cloud Architect at Cloud Technology Partners, will discuss the business value of IoT that goes far beyond the general public's perception that IoT is all about wearables and home consumer services. The presentation will also discuss how IoT is perceived by investors and how venture capitalist access this space. Other topics to discuss are barriers to success, what is n...
When one expects instantaneous response from video generated on the internet, lots of invisible problems have to be overcome. In his session at 6th Big Data Expo®, Tom Paquin, EVP and Chief Technology Officer at OnLive, to discuss how to overcome these problems. A Silicon Valley veteran, Tom Paquin provides vision, expertise and leadership to the technology research and development effort at OnLive as EVP and Chief Technology Officer. With more than 20 years of management experience at lead...
BlueData aims to “democratize Big Data” with its launch of EPIC Enterprise, which it calls “the industry’s first Big Data software to enable enterprises to create a self-service cloud experience on premise.” This self-service private cloud allows enterprises to create 100-node Hadoop and Spark clusters in less than 10 minutes. The company is also offering a Community Edition via free download. We had a few questions for BlueData CEO Kumar Sreekanti about all this, and here's what he had to s...
Labor market analytics firm Wanted Analytics recently assessed the market for technology professionals and found that demand for people with proficient levels of Hadoop expertise had skyrocketed by around 33% since last year – it is true, Hadoop is hard technology to master and the labor market is not exactly flooded with an over-abundance of skilled practitioners. Hadoop has been called a foundational technology, rather than ‘just’ a database by some commentators – this almost pushes it towards...
The cloud provides an easy onramp to building and deploying Big Data solutions. Transitioning from initial deployment to large-scale, highly performant operations may not be as easy. In his session at 15th Cloud Expo, Harold Hannon, Sr. Software Architect at SoftLayer, will discuss the benefits, weaknesses, and performance characteristics of public and bare metal cloud deployments that can help you make the right decisions.
Where historically app development would require developers to manage device functionality, application environment and application logic, today new platforms are emerging that are IoT focused and arm developers with cloud based connectivity and communications, development, monitoring, management and analytics tools. In her session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Seema Jethani, Director of Product Management at Basho Technologies, will explore how to rapidly prototype using IoT cloud platforms and c...
Amazon, Google and Facebook are household names in part because of their mastery of Big Data. But what about organizations without billions of dollars to spend on Big Data tools - how can they extract value from their data? Ion Stoica is co-founder and CEO of Databricks, a company working to revolutionize Big Data analysis through the Apache Spark platform. He also serves as a professor of computer science at the University of California, Berkeley. Ion previously co-founded Conviva to commercial...