Happy Holidays from PentaHO HO HO

December 24, 2010

A message from our San Francisco office

Top 10 Reasons to Attend the Pentaho Global Partner Summit

December 16, 2010

This has been an exciting year at Pentaho.  We have built some revolutionary products, expanded our international presence, pioneered the way in Big Data Analytics, and seen unprecedented growth month over month.  As a reflection of Pentaho’s continued momentum into 2011, the theme of this year’s Global Partner Summit is ‘Rising Above‘.

This turnkey event will equip your team with the knowledge, inspiration, and resources necessary to drive revenue with your Pentaho partnership.  There are countless reasons to attend the Pentaho Global Partner Summit this January, here are our top 10:

10. San Francisco is rated in the Top 5 of US News & World Report’s ‘World’s Best Places to Visit’.  What are you waiting for?

9. Gain an insider’s view on the future direction of Pentaho in 2011, both as a company and as a product.

8. Learn how to improve your market development with sessions such as “Lead Generation 2.0” and first-hand how-to success stories from some of Pentaho’s top parters.

7. The man that CNNMoney.com declares has the #35 Best Job in America will be serving up a number of educational sessions on topics such as “Extending Pentaho’s Capabilities” and “Agile BI Methodology”.

6. You have the opportunity to do a 5 minute presentation on your own success with Pentaho for the Global Partner Network during an exciting “Lightening Round” session.

5. The 2011 Partner Awards will be announced!

4. Jos van Dongen, co-author of the Amazon best-selling books Pentaho Solutions and Pentaho Kettle Solutions, will be delivering a candid and informative Keynote speech on the business intelligence space and where Pentaho falls on the map.

3. Connect with Pentaho partners from around the world to share best practices on driving revenue with open source business intelligence.

2. Meet one-on-one with Pentaho’s top executive team, including Richard Daley, CEO, James Dixon, Chief Geek, Lars Nordwall, VP Worldwide Sales, and many more.

1. Now is the time to take your company to the next level and this is the turnkey event to help your BI practice to ‘Rise Above‘ in 2011!

Find out more about Rising Above: Pentaho Global Partner Summit 2011 here, and be sure to join the conversation with us on Twitter with the hashtag #PGPS.

La vie en Pentaho

December 15, 2010

As I write this blog I am on my way back home after a day in Paris where we participated in our first industry event in France last week.

Much of the past week has been French flavoured with the announcement of Pentaho in France, including several interviews with journalists, publications writing about and picking up on our announcement and last but  certainly not least, the launch of our brand-new website in French. It was about time that we truly had a local presence in France!

To emphasise our intentions, we participated in the Forum Decideo 2010, an annual event held in Paris which brings together BI experts, users, vendors for a series of case study presentations and expert sessions. We attended the event with our new French partner Valuetis, who also sponsored the event. It was a great experience to meet and speak with so many of our French friends.

Speaking of partners, we also held a webinar, Delivering low risk, low cost business intelligence solutions, last week with a new UK partner called Voodoo, who bring years of BI experience to bear and are fully focused on Pentaho. If you missed today’s webinar, feel free to view the replay here.

It’s really ‘La vie en Pentaho‘ these days and a great way to move through the last month of 2010.

Many of you are probably busy finishing up some activities before the holiday seasons, so I wish you all ‘bon courage’.

Vinay Joosery
Pentaho Corporation

13 highlights Pentaho BI Suite Bootcamp

December 15, 2010

As the new product marketing manager at Pentaho, I wanted to write my first blog on my experience attending the four-day Pentaho BI Suite Bootcamp. This class is key to better understand the architecture of the Pentaho BI Suite and get hands on experience with the Pentaho BI Suite, ETL/Data Integration, Analysis and Reporting.

I have to say that coming from an enterprise data integration vendor such as IBM, I was a bit skeptical of any open source solution. What I expected was the bare bones: limited data type coverage, no metadata, basic data modeling and simple BI reporting. What I discovered was to the other extreme. I was taken by surprise on both the breath and the depth of the solution.

Here is my list of lucky 13 highlights from the class:

1.     Coverage of all types of data from what you expect (DB2, Oracle, & SQL Server) to Hadoop, Netezza, Teradata, SAP ERP systems, and of course MySQL and PostgreSQL.

2.     Parallel processing of data transformations – with an ‘intuitive’ UI that eliminates the need for coding. Unlike other tools in the market from both Open Source as well as major proprietary ETL vendors that are code generators, Pentaho Data Integration eliminates the need for coding. Talk about a low TCO!

3.     A shared repository gives a great opportunity for team work and collaboration in the process.

4.     Can handle very sophisticated dimensional modeling concepts – combination, degenerate, and conformed, and slowing changing dimensions, star and snow flake schemas.

5.     Power of OLAP for dynamic aggregation, so developers don’t have to figure out the reporting requirements ahead of time with SQL. This is an extraordinary piece of the puzzle.

6.     Caching and aggregate-aware constructs, so look ups don’t need to hit the database for every row. The wait times will be a lot less and latency is reduced.

7.     Removing the SQL layer for BI developers and data analysts. This has two benefits:  1. Reduces the complexity. 2. Protects databases from novice SQL users that can harm the system. Instead, a set of “business objects” (customer, product, etc) are presented for building reports and dashboards.

8.     Covers all types of reporting needs: Production reporting (for managed and high volume pixel perfect distribution), ad hoc analysis (for interactive analysis to measure business performance against time, location, product lines), operational reporting (for detailed reporting on the current state of data supporting ERP and CRM applications), and data mining (for predictive analysis to detect fraud / next best offers).

9.     Full drill in and out capabilities on reports. Can drill in from summary information to details. Can also drill from report to report with hyperlinks.

10.  Parametrized reports for the interactivity factor needed for analysis. Examples: What if I change the time dimension, or region? What changes I will see and how I need to adjust my operations accordingly?

11.  Dashboards, scorecards, and metrics that allow business users assemble previously built reports, queries, and analysis, needing “zero-training”.

12.  A quick installation got me up and ready in a few minutes. Quote from a customer in the class: “was able to kick this off in 10 minutes”. This customer has evaluated Pentaho’s other Open Source rivals and had found Pentaho to be superior.

13.  And now, for the cream of the crop…Something that the Big guys of ETL are light years behind: Pentaho’s integrated ETL, Visualization, and Modeling environment. It was really cool to be able to create a live connection to an transactional systems (OLTP), select some tables, and from there click right into the modeling and data visualization environments, analyze the content of those tables, do some profiling and decide the best ETL paths as well as best data structures for our new target schema. This was really exciting for me to see, as I have seen struggles around it before. Pentaho not only has all the pieces of the puzzle (ETL, Analysis, Modeling, OLAP, Predictive), which a lot of other vendors don’t even have, but it also has ‘integrated’ them into one development suite that helps the user walk through the process of building a BI solution one step at the time and on a consistent path to completion.

Seeing this set of “sophisticated” ETL, Data Modeling, OLAP, Visualization, and BI tools just left me with one puzzling question at the end. This is what I wrote in my notes at the end of the class:I can’t believe this is all so cheap! Where I was we used to charge hundreds if not millions of dollars for this!”

Farnaz Erfan
Product Marketing Manager
Pentaho Corporation

Agile BI from the road – reflections of a road warrior

December 14, 2010

Last week was not just the celebration of the anniversary of the Pentaho Agile BI initiative, it was also the conclusion of my detective tour throughout the US to both teach and learn about Agile BI.  I call this a detective tour because we really use these types of events to investigate and better understand just what’s going on in the marketplace and what BI challenges companies are trying to overcome. Over the past 4 months Pentaho has visited over 26 cities worldwide with the Agile BI Tour – Data to Dashboards in Minutes. I was at 15 of the cities across the US presenting on our Agile BI Initiative along with our partners.

These live, free workshops were ideal for attendees to learn because of the depth of demonstrations,  discussion of our Agile BI integration development environment and actual customer implementation examples. I personally found it very rewarding being on the ground and speaking with hundreds of BI users (or soon-to-be users). I had the usual slide presentations and demonstrations, yet found that in the majority of the cities, our time would consist of 70% Q&A and 30% slides. Along with the in-depth conversations I had with companies of all sizes across the US, I was also able to analyze the results of the survey’s we received back from almost every attendee of the Agile BI tour. Drawing from my experience on the road and survey analysis, I have four major observations of the current state of Agile BI:

  1. There remains a crying need for a better BI solution in the marketplace.
  2. In almost all of the cities, the majority of attendees were already users of existing BI solutions, mostly those from the traditional vendors such as SAP/Business Objects, IBM/Cognos, Oracle, Microstrategy and others.  While this was initially was a shock, their answers to the questionnaire revealed the dissatisfaction and challenges with existing solutions, and to a large degree, why they are looking for alternatives.
  3. An overwhelming number of attendees responded that their number one challenge with their existing BI solutions was cost followed closely by the lack of IT resources to get their projects done.  Additional related factors included the complexity of existing BI solutions and the time it takes to get BI reports.
  4. Simply put, most users of BI need better, less expensive solutions that can deliver critical analytic data and reports faster. In spite of all of the BI solutions that are available today from the traditional BI vendors, the market and users still find themselves struggling with the core basics of putting more and better BI in the hands of users.

I can’t wait until January and we are back on the road to more locations and more users with the Agile BI Tour.  And of course, we are not slowing down on the product front either with very exciting product plans in the works for next year.  For Pentaho and our users, 2011 promises to be an exciting year.

Joe Nicholson
VP Product Marketing and Agile BI Road Warrior

Happy 1 year anniversary Pentaho Agile BI!

December 8, 2010

Today we celebrate the one year anniversary of launching our Pentaho Agile BI initiative. Over the past year the Pentaho Agile BI initiative has received tremendous traction and praise throughout the industry and, more importantly, has impacted organizations in a positive way.

We thought an appropriate gift for our community is something that you would find insightful. For you, we have three new white papers that cover Pentaho Agile BI from different perspectives:

  • Pentaho Agile BI: An iterative methodology for fast, flexible and cost-effective Business Intelligence, by Pentaho Chief Geek/CTO, James Dixon
  • Business Intelligence at the Crossroads: The Need for Lean, Agile and Effective End-User Solutions, by Joshua Greenbaum, principal, Enterprise Applications Consulting
  • Realizing the Agile BI Opportunity, by Joshua Greenbaum, principal, Enterprise Applications Consulting

You can download the complimentary Agile BI white papers here.

November in review

December 6, 2010

The month of November was very exciting as we announced a new product suite along with General Availability of three products.  We add five new customer success stories including one industry award for customer success and three customer webcast. To top it off, we surpassed 150,000 installations of Pentaho year-to-date – you can learn more about this analysis (using Pentaho BI) on our blog. Read on for a quick recap of our busy November.

Product Announcements

In November, Pentaho announced the availability of the Pentaho Enterprise Data Services Suite. This new data services platform is designed to streamline and simplify the complicated and costly process of accessing, integrating and preparing data for analysis. Or, as our CEO Richard Daley explains new platform in his blog, ‘Sex & Sizzle – not without plumbing’.

Learn more about the product and download a free trial today

The release of Pentaho Enterprise Data Services Suite is in conjunction with the general availability of:

  • Pentaho Data Integration 4.1 GA
  • Pentaho BI Suite 3.7 GA
  • Pentaho for Hadoop GA

New Customer Successes

  • Congrats to StoneGate Senior Care for winning the Ventana Research 2010 Leadership Award for overall operational analytics and performance
  • Online Buddies uses Open Source BI to improve reporting and grow their business – watch the webcast
  • Marketo goes to market quickly with Pentaho – watch the webcast
  • London Oncology uses Pentaho to make critical decisions about medical patient care and financial aspects of their business – watch the webcast
  • Cognitive Match, online behavior targeting experts strike new markets with Pentaho
  • BizIntel, leading Nordic solutions provider brewed up SaaS BI product, ‘BI-on-Tap’ with Pentaho
  • Chilean Superintendencia de Pensiones and Winterfoods share their success at the event Pentaho in Uruguay held by Pentaho partner, Cognus

New Resources

Published in November is an in-depth technology audit of Pentaho BI Suite Enterprise Edition by leading European analyst firm, Ovum. The first time such an in-depth, publicly available study has been attempted.

The Ovum Technology Audit White Paper is available for download by visiting http://www.pentaho.com/ovum_technology_audit/

In the News

Here are a few highlights of Pentaho in the news in November. To see more highlights, visit the Pentaho Digital News Room.

Business Intelligence: How to Get Agile
Information Week, Doug Henschen

Pentaho launches data analysis suite
Techworld, Maxwell Cooter

Pentaho Moving More Toward Innovation With Data Platform Information Management
Information Management, Justin Kern

50 Open Source Apps You Can Use in the Cloud
Internet.com, Cynthia Harvey

Sex & Sizzle – ah, but only after Business Intelligence plumbing
Computer Weekly, Adrian Bridgwater

Open Source Business Intelligence: What Are Your Options?
eCRMGuide.com, Drew Robb

Gunning for Your Business: NoSQL, Big Data Companies Targeting Enterprises
ITBusinessEdge, Loraine Lawson


We had some great online events in November. If you missed them, you are in luck and can watch them On-Demand.

In addition, we posted the agenda including over 30 sessions for the Pentaho Global Partner Summit, January 19-20 in San Francisco, California. This is an ideal event for System Integrators and Resellers, as well as Software Providers with a need to embed business intelligence or data integration software into your products.

Already looking forward to the last recap of 2010!


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