If you Google “BI Search,” the way-back machine takes you to a raft of stories from 2006 when talk was rampant that the future of business intelligence might lie in a blinking cursor in a text pane. Before and since, vendors have been working to make data and information access more intuitive for casual users, a model you’d expect to grow as text mining and analytics mature.

With emphasis on existing reports and other unstructured information, Google also figured large for BI search in 2006 and quickly struck partnerships with most of the well-known BI vendors. I still read about this and expect we’ll see more, even if no one has yet approached me with a powerful use case.

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