Saturday, July 30, 2011
More on event processing as analytics/business intelligence
This is nice picture I borrowed from a BI blog, talking about seven ways to report BI results.
Last week I have written on the fact that nowadays we see various sources who classify event processing as a kind of analytics, Gartner, in a recent report, used the term "active analytics" in a report classifying event processing as analytics. Jeff Wooton from Sybase said in the Sybase Blog that I am pondering whether event processing is analytics, and stated his positive answer to that, After looking up the meaning of the word "pondering" (I still have some holes in my English vocabulary), I am not sure it is the right phrase to express my attitude. I have drawn an observation that people did not use to classify event processing as analytics in the past, and started to do it in the last year or so. Since I did not see a big shift in what event processing is doing at that time, then either there is a shift in how analytics is defined, or that the event processing marketing guys are riding on the analytics hype. I guess that there is a truth in both. The analytics guys are talking about event processing as part of analytics from their side.
Paul Vincent noticed that there is a recent Communication of ACM article entitled "An overview of Business Intelligence technology". Paul complains about the fact that the authors looks at event processing as equals to continuous queries, while in reality many of the models (and products) are base on other programming models such as rules (Paul has illustrated the distribution into programming models on a genealogy illustration of event processing languages). Paul is right in the sense that people from the database research community view all the universe as centered around their terminology, and are sometimes ignorant about other approaches. What makes it more interest is that one of the CACM article authors is Umesh Dayal (currently in HP Labs), Umesh (which is one of my early professional inspirations) is considered to be the father of "active databases", and the HiPaC project in CCA that he managed has coined the Event-Condition-Action architecture, and in a conversation I had with him a few years ago he thought that the ECA architecture had a lot of traction; Seems that Umesh did not keep track on the descendants of HiPac!
Anyway -- besides the complains, this is an indication that the BI guys adopted event processing to be part of BI from their side, which is somewhat extending the definition of what BI is. Interesting!