What you missed in Big Data: Empowering analysts


It seems that barely a few days can go by nowadays without some vendor launching a new tool to simplify data processing. Last week, that vendor was Talend Inc., which introduced a freemium desktop application for molding spreadsheets into a form that can be ingested by modern business intelligence software. Its main selling point is a graphical dashboard that makes it possible to perform the entire process visually, starting from the initial cleansing phase.

Once they’ve filtered out all the inaccurate and duplicate entries, analysts can use the drag-and-drop controls in Talend Data Preparation to start augmenting their information with records from external sources. A paid edition slated to roll out the next quarter will add ability to create reusable processing pipelines in order to reduce repetition and thereby speed up the delivery of business insights. The tool targets organizations that can’t justify the purchase of pricier and more complicated preparation solutions like Trifacta Inc.s namesake platform, which attracted $35 million in funding last week from a group of high-profile investors.

The list includes Silicon Valley heavyweights Accel Partners and Greylock Partners as well as Chinese private equity giant Cathay Capital. The startup has built up an equally impressive client roster over the last few years thanks a novel approach to data wrangling that employs machine learning in order to reduce the amount of manual tinkering analysts have to perform. Every time a change is made to a group of records, Trifecta’s technology generates a list of suggestions on how to proceed next that can be implemented with a few clicks.

An up-and-coming help desk provider called Gorgias Inc. raised $1.5 million in a funding round of its own two days after the company to apply the same concept to contact center management. Its artificial intelligences is able to automatically produce canned responses for support requests using a combination of natural language processing technology and customer data stored in an organization’s business systems. Like Trifacta, the software provides multiple options for every ticket and enables users to modify the generated content for better accuracy.

Image via Geralt