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Data Research DPU
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Data Research DPU for Evaluation of Information Technology

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Bloor Research Group:

Business Intelligence through Data Mining

"Data Mining is the extraction of previously unknown, and potentially useful, information from an organisation´s existing data resources..."

Published December 1998

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Who Should Invest in This Report

Data Mining offers the possibility of a very large return on investment and long term improvements in business effectiveness. Its potential has been diluted through the very technical nature of Data Mining products. This report will demystify the issues around the use of Data Mining. As such it provides essential reading for:

  • business managers
  • technology managers responsible for Business Intelligence & Data Warehouse strategies
  • technical staff tasked with implementing those strategies.

The Content of the Report

The report consists of a number of sections dealing with:

  • how data mining adds value to the information assets of an organisation
  • usability and cost issues
  • market evolution and futures
  • an analysis of 16 leading vendors
  • an appendix of data mining techniques, and a glossary of terms.

Vendors included in this report

    Angoss Attar Software Business Objects Cognos
    Compression Sciences IBM Integral Solutions LPA
    Pilot Software Quadstone Red Brick Systems SAS Institute
    SGI Smart Focus SPSS Whitecross

In researching the report it became apparent that there is a greater variety of approach in Data Mining than has been found in any other  technology area investigated by Bloor Research. The descriptions of  products show the distinct approaches and suggest the most appropriate usage for the different types.

Why You Should Buy This Report

Data Mining products are not of the `one size fits all´ variety. It is important to recognise the strengths and limitations of different product types in order to define an appropriate shortlist which matches business requirements. It is also important to recognise the hidden costs - especially those concerned with preparing data for mining.  The report explains these issues in vendor-neutral business-related terms.

Access to this research material can save many man-months of investigation and guide an organisation away from the potential of expensive mistakes.

The Issues

Data Mining uses relatively lowcost computational power to carry out pattern searches to discover trends and relationships - patterns which are often not intuitive and would have remained undiscovered without this technology. Data Mining is recognised as making a major contribution towards fraud detection and is becoming commonplace for predicting purchasing trends for large retail organisations. The technology is evolving very quickly and soon will touch organisations of any size. But it still exposes its highly technical foundation - a feature which can deter less technical business and IT mangers from exploiting its potential.

Making an inappropriate decision on Data Mining technology can be expensive, time consuming and devoid of business benefit. We have conducted this research to enable managers to make informed decisions and enabling them to answer some fundamental questions:

  • In what areas can Data Mining be deployed to bring business benefit?
  • What are the prerequisites for a successful implementation?
  • What are the hidden costs in deploying Data Mining?
  • How can the technology be introduced to non-technical users?
  • How is the Data Mining market likely to evolve?
  • Which products are the best fit with the business requirements?

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