Author Archives: Colin Hoad

Edward Snowden

PRISM, Snowden and the NSA: when Big Data becomes Too Much Data

A lot has already been written about Edward Snowden’s claims regarding the NSA and its PRISM program. I don’t intend to get into the politics of this issue or contemplate what Snowden’s motivations might be – this has been covered at length elsewhere. My interest, at this point, lies in the technical implications of what […]

Warehouse

BI 101: What is a data warehouse?

It is fair to say that the foundation stone upon which nearly every BI solution is built is the data warehouse. So what is it, and what makes it different from a conventional database? The first thing to stress is that a data warehouse is still a type of database. What makes it different is […]

Business Intelligence

BI 101: What is Business Intelligence?

For the uninitiated, the term “business intelligence” has the potential to generate quite a lot of questions. When is business ever unintelligent? How is it different from business analysis? What tools and skills does it employ? Why is it important? Would my business benefit from it? This first post in the “BI 101” series begins […]

The Cloud

Amazon Redshift

At its recent re:Invent partner conference, Amazon unveiled a cloud-based data warehousing solution, provisionally named Redshift. The Register has more details here. This is not the first time that the concepts of “cloud” and “BI” have come together. What is interesting, though, is how Amazon is seeking to position this new technology (or, at least, […]