The last five years have brought a fresh wave of thinking to the frontier of business intelligence. The advent of massively parallel processing, data appliances, in-memory databases and cloud computing are challenging old technology stereotypes. New demands to confront mission-critical instances of operational data, predictive analytics and unstructured content have arrived in response to a changing wave of business objectives. All this is happening in a lingering climate of cost and resource constraint. A challenge for many organizations is the question, “What can we do next?”

We might start with what we already know, because, amid change, old obstacles persist painfully and cost a lot of money to remedy. An expensive toolbelt of application resources for reporting, dashboards, integration, data movement and change data capture already hangs at the waist of many organizations. Other organizations have simply lacked the financial means to tackle desirable BI-related projects at all because of the high cost of entry.

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