Sunday, January 10, 2010

On predictive, anticipative and proactive enterprise

As a skeptic person, I am not a big believer in astrology, but follows it from time to time; twice in my life the astrology predictive for the year for me was that there is going to be career shift in the next year, and twice it really happened, but this is still not a scientific evidence. Anyway, astrology is a kind of prediction source, but there are other sources like business intelligence tools. Richard Veryard in his Blog has recently written that the enterprise need to go beyond predictive, in the sense that the enterprise needs not only to passively predict the future, but also taking action in advance to the future, he used the term: anticipative for this kind of functionality.

First, I agree with the observation. One of the next frontiers is to go beyond predictive from BI point of view, as well as reactive from event processing point of view. I prefer the term proactive rather then anticipative to what Richard has described.

Some comments about the distinctions between predictive and proactive:

  1. predictive typically relates to the strategic level --- watch trends and change the inventory policy; proactive may relate to operative --- anticipate that something in the operative level may happen (e.g. massive water leakage from the pipe infrastructure) and do something to mitigate it.
  2. predictive typically collects data over long period of time, processes it in batch, and apply it periodically, or on request; proactive works in short-term, sometimes with time constraints.
Proactive may be seen as evolution both of BI and of event processing.

More about proactive -- later.

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