Later this month, Tibco will add big data support to its Spotfire in-memory analytics platform, along with upgrades for predictive analytics. The new Spotfire 4.5 adds a connector for Apache Hadoop, which will let users add big data to data mashups, data discovery and analytics tasks they now do with Oracle, SAP, salesforce.com and unstructured data.

Users will be able to access, visualize, and mashup and get a unified view of all their data sources, Lou Jordano, Tibco’s director of product marketing for Spotfire, told IDN. “Customers, especially in retail or consumer goods customers are interested in big data, but they also want to combine it with their existing disparate data set. Delivering these capabilities with simplicity and speed, the architecture matters.”

Jordano paints a compelling picture of the real-time retailer:

Spotfire’s expanded unified – which taps into all these data sources – can satisfy the call center by layering together data about the customers’ purchase histories, complaint histories by phone or email, how much and what they post about the company’s products to social networks (like Facebook), and so on. From that data, Spotfire can apply events, BPM (business processe management) and analytics to determine the next step, he said.

Inside Tibco’s Spotfire 4.5
Features and Architecture

Spotfire 4.5 builds on its visualization-based data discovery, collaboration and analytics platform. Leveraging this platform, Spotfire offers an incorporated view of structured, semi-structured and unstructured content (email, documents, texts, websites, social media and more sources) on a single dashboard, he said.

Spotfire 4.5’s new Hadoop connector lets users leverage much bigger and multiple data sets. “We have a library of connectors that let Spotfire connect to a federation of data stores. The new connector for Hadoop will expand our capacity for doing data mashups across all types and sizes of datastores,” Jordano said.

“Spotfire’s connector for Hadoop will expand our capacity for doing data mashups across all types and sizes of datastores.” ——Lou Jordano, Director of Product Marketing, Spotfire Tibco


The Hadoop connector operates by pulling log files, loading them into in-memory with other data and then manipulating that data in any dimension the user would like for self-service e-discovery, analytics or event-based activities, he added.

Spotfire 4.5 also adds features to lets users combine a search-based exploration model with a visualization-based approach to data discovery using Attivio’s Active Intelligence Engine (AIE). Spotfire comes with certified support for Attivio AIE for tapping AI-SQL to support data visualization and analytics of unstructured content, as well as intuitive search and discovery tasks.

Beyond data discovery and analytics, Spotfire 4.5 also supports real-time events. “We use CEP [complex event processing], data discovery, data visualization and other techniques with a company’s data in a fascinating variety of ways,” he said. Spotfire’s in-memory architecture is a key element to make events effective for business users, Jordano added.

Using Spotfire 4.5, customers can improve business operations, increase sales and even tap into new opportunities. “With Spotfire, whenever a sales rep or other employee [has contact with] a customer, they will have intelligence at hand,” Jordano said. Customer reps will be able to better engage with customers on the phone or in the store, and even have Spotfire automatically suggest items or offers, he added.

Spotfire 4.5 addresses data quality across these mounting data volumes by leveraging MDM (master data management). “Having more data means it’s even more important to have clean data for historical data, real-time operations and predictive analytics,” Jordano added.

It also sports pre-packaged predictive methods to help users anticipate business outcomes from “data at rest” and “data in motion.” Spotfire 4.5 can also front-end analytic models from SAS and MathWork’s MATLAB, and it works with HP’s Vertica analytic database, and SAP’s Sybase IQ database.

Spotfire 4.5 also adds an iPad deployment kit and improvements for systems monitoring and management.