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Oracle Proves Unstructured Data Is Big Business

"Big data" is a term that many vendors throw around as an indicator of how they are looking to deal with massive amounts of unstructured data. There are dozens of solutions on the market that claim to tame the wild world of big data. However, many of those solutions require multiple vendors and significant integration to work as intended. Oracle is looking to change that situation by creating a platform that leverages Oracle’s key software and hardware technologies to bring unstructured data analysis under the umbrella of a single vendor.

At this week’s annual Oracle OpenWorld extravaganza, top company executives pitched Oracle’s latest series of high-end computer systems, which are squarely aimed at the growing market for helping businesses analyze, crunch and study data in new and faster ways--giving real horsepower to the big data analytics movement.

The Oracle OpenWorld Event is a four-day gathering of some 45,000 customers, business partners and other industry figures, and consists of seminars, sales pitches, workshops and parties that have spilled out of San Francisco's Moscone Center to fill other buildings nearby. It has become the perfect venue for Oracle CEO Larry Ellison to boost Oracle's claim in the lucrative business enterprise storage, computing and databases.

This year’s theme centers on big data, which, in Oracle’s vernacular, translates to analyzing mountains of digital information to identify trends, anticipate problems or even forecast customer behavior. To that end, Oracle has taken the wraps off two new solutions--the Exalytics Business Intelligence Machine and the Oracle Big Data Appliance. Both are designed to work in conjunction to allow businesses to sort and analyze traditional data and, more importantly, unstructured data such as social media, public records and Twitter feeds. What’s more, Oracle is touting its strategy of developing computer systems in which hardware and software are designed to work closely together for optimum performance.

For those focused on business intelligence (BI), market analytics and discovering the value of hidden data, Oracle’s new solutions may just make something that has traditionally been complex much easier. Nevertheless, as automation creeps into the analytics market, business operators are going to have to become increasingly aware of how algorithms behave in the wild and how results may not seem to follow preconceived notions. That means IT professionals are going to have to become intimately aware of how solutions such as Oracle’s work in concert and with unstructured data.

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