My recent move to Burton Group, where I cover content management and enterprise search, led to what we call in the business "a column crisis." I've been writing about a variety of topics, but with an emphasis on "volume analytics" - what insights are possible if you crunch a huge mass of data, such as in Web analytics. However, my new area of coverage takes me away from that. Hmm, what to do?

In a conference call with DM Review editor in chief Mary Jo Nott and editorial director Jim Ericson, we discussed the issues currently confronting business intelligence (BI). One trend that we all agreed on was that the worlds of structured and unstructured data are merging. Because users now just want relevant information - no matter where it resides - the distinctions between the two are starting to blur. Technologies such as XML and XQuery make the realm of "semistructured data" possible - which, in turn, is going to change the face of BI significantly.

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