I suppose it had to happen – someone was going to come up with the Analytics 3.0 tag somewhere along the line. The honor went to Thomas Davenport, Distinguished Professor in Information Technology and Management at Babson College, and a noted expert on analytics and business process innovation.
Davenport’s assertion, originally written about in WSJ guest blog, and then picked up by CIO.com, is that Analytics 1.0 were the pre-big data; Analytics 2.0 were the early days of big data but that we now “are entering the Analytics 3.0 world. It’s an environment that combines the best of 1.0 and 2.0—a blend of big data and traditional analytics that yields insights and offerings with speed and impact.”
Well, thank goodness it’s official and thank you Professor Davenport for stating the obvious. It’s been clear to anyone who has worked around analytics and big data that the real win for businesses comes when companies can combine and analyze structured data from their enterprise applications with unstructured web data and data from public or subscription sources.
I agree with the assertions that Davenport makes in his blog and especially the point he makes on the need for analytic tools that are deployed at the point of decision-making in the form of highly targeted, mobile analytical apps. One of our customers, Actian Corporation, came up with the term “action apps” to describe this concept over a year ago and they are exactly correct in championing the idea that analytic apps have to drive action in the form of faster, more informed decision making to have real value to the business.
Analytics 3.0? Who knows and, really, who cares? The fact is that we are in the right place at the right time to make this a reality. Driven by the enabling technologies of low-cost data storage and processing and powerful mobile devices running on low cost, high bandwidth networks, meaningful and impactful analytic applications are possible and if you want it Analytics 3.0, that’s OK by me.