Using Open Source Platforms for Business Intelligence

Using Open Source Platforms for Business Intelligence

Avoid Pitfalls and Maximize ROI

1st Edition - September 17, 2012

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  • Author: Lyndsay Wise
  • eBook ISBN: 9780124158764
  • Paperback ISBN: 9780124158115

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Open Source BI solutions have many advantages over traditional proprietary software, from offering lower initial costs to more flexible support and integration options; but, until now, there has been no comprehensive guide to the complete offerings of the OS BI market. Writing for IT managers and business analysts without bias toward any BI suite, industry insider Lyndsay Wise covers the benefits and challenges of all available open source BI systems and tools, enabling readers to identify the solutions and technologies that best meet their business needs. Wise compares and contrasts types of OS BI and proprietary tools on the market, including Pentaho, Jaspersoft, RapidMiner, SpagoBI, BIRT, and many more. Real-world case studies and project templates clarify the steps involved in implementing open source BI, saving new users the time and trouble of developing their own solutions from scratch. For business managers who are hard pressed to indentify the best BI solutions and software for their companies, this book provides a practical guide to evaluating the ROI of open source versus traditional BI deployments.

Key Features

  • The only book to provide complete coverage of all open source BI systems and tools specifically for business managers, without bias toward any OS BI suite
  • A practical, step-by-step guide to implementing OS BI solutions that maximize ROI
  • Comprehensive coverage of all open source systems and tools, including architectures, data integration, support, optimization, data mining, data warehousing, and interoperability
  • Case studies and project templates enable readers to evaluate the benefits and tradeoffs of all OS BI options without having to spend time developing their own solutions from scratch


Business Analysts, Program Managers, Project Managers, IT Managers, CFO/CTOs

Table of Contents

  • Dedication


    SECTION 1: Introduction and market overview

    Chapter 1. Introducing BI

    Why is there a need for this book?

    What to expect in this book

    An introduction to BI

    The components of business intelligence

    Chapter 2. OS overview

    Why understanding OS matters

    A historical look at the broader OS market

    The general appeal of OS

    The OS market specifically

    Personal thoughts about OS expansion

    Chapter 3. The convergence of OS and BI

    OSBI gaining popularity

    The expansion of OS offerings and positioning

    The unique fit of OSBI and its effects on the broader market landscape

    Breakdown of OSBI technology

    General considerations for organizations

    Chapter 4. A look at the OSBI market


    The OSBI market – a general overview

    Traditional OS communities

    Adopting OSBI

    Why OS?

    OSBI transition and the expansion of OSBI into BI

    OSBI within the OS market

    Where OSBI solutions will/should be in the future

    Implications for businesses

    SECTION 2: A deeper look at OSBI

    Chapter 5. The increasing popularity of OS

    A look at BI drivers

    Putting it all together

    Chapter 6. The differences between general OS and commercial offerings

    Understanding different OS models

    Looking at community and commercial OS models

    OSBI models

    Looking at the community/commercial focus in the broader market

    The drivers of commercial OS for BI

    The bottom line

    Chapter 7. Business benefits and challenges of OS for BI

    How business and IT approach BI

    The relationship between business and IT

    Are benefits and challenges different or similar for business and IT worldviews?

    A look at OSBI benefits

    Business benefits – a wrap-up

    A look at OSBI challenges

    What all of this means for business justification

    SECTION 3: BI strategies for success – tying in OS adoption with BI success

    Chapter 8. The strategy behind BI adoption

    Adopting BI

    Why these factors matter

    Why choose OS

    Why go traditional


    Chapter 9. Implications for users

    A practical guide to selecting OS

    Business factors of adoption

    Technical factors


    Checklist for software selection and implementation

    SECTION 4: Justifying OSBI projects

    Chapter 10. Selling an OSBI project to the business

    A closer look at ways of selling OSBI

    Community OSBI adoption

    Commercial after community

    Commercial for the first time

    New to BI

    BI expansion

    Rip and replace

    Embedded applications

    Sorting out the different models and what it means to business units

    Why sell to the business

    Selling framework

    The bottom line for OSBI adoption in organizations

    Chapter 11. Evaluating ROI and TCO

    Developing valid definitions of ROI and TCO

    Total cost of ownership

    ROI and TCO similarities and differences

    Why ROI and TCO are important to software selection

    Developing an evaluation framework for your OSBI project

    Putting everything together

    What is time to value?

    A look at long-term ROI and TCO

    Chapter 12. Developing a cost-benefit analysis for OSBI: A practical look at ROI and TCO calculations

    General TCO/ROI models – a look at what exists in the market

    Applying these models to ROI for OSBI

    Evaluating TCO for OSBI

    ROI and TCO calculations

    Looking at commercial versus community offerings

    SECTION 5: Understanding the technology behind business value

    Chapter 13. A look at technical considerations

    How do technical considerations help with the evaluation process?

    Evaluating the current IT infrastructure

    Looking at data integration

    Disparate data sources

    Database technologies and what the differences mean in terms of end-user delivery


    Chapter 14. Understanding integration and data preparation

    Looking at the components of BI

    Why organizations should consider complementary offerings



    Evaluating the current BI environment

    A brief look at Hadoop

    Integrating OSBI with traditional offerings

    The reality of the market

    Chapter 15. Working within an OS environment

    Introduction to developers

    A word about Java

    Development within a community OS environment

    Development within a commercial OS environment

    Free software access without source code

    Support available to developers

    Community involvement and vendor differences

    Collaboration with other developers

    Participating in vendor software development

    Upgrades, bug fixes, and the list goes on

    Looking ahead at developer requirements

    Chapter 16. Required skillsets

    Technical skills

    Java Programming

    IT project management

    Network and database optimization

    Metrics and analytics development

    Data modeling

    Data integration

    Business skills

    Business requirements

    Business unit interrelationships

    Business sponsor

    Business rules expertise

    Navigating the political maze

    Tying it all together

    Chapter 17. Technical benefits and challenges

    Expanding on the differences in technical versus business benefits and challenges

    A look at the technical benefits of OSBI adoption

    What about commercial OS and free software trials?

    The issue of support and proprietary limitations

    Weighing the benefits against the challenges

    Understanding technical challenges

    What types of challenges exist?

    Understanding the real benefits and challenges of software development

    SECTION 6: Takeaways/recommendations

    Chapter 18. Getting started: A checklist for OSBI readiness

    Business considerations

    Technical considerations

    Putting all the pieces together

    Important OS factors

    Can do with or without

    General conclusion


Product details

  • No. of pages: 232
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Morgan Kaufmann 2012
  • Published: September 17, 2012
  • Imprint: Morgan Kaufmann
  • eBook ISBN: 9780124158764
  • Paperback ISBN: 9780124158115

About the Author

Lyndsay Wise

Lyndsay Wise is the President and Founder of WiseAnalytics, an independent analyst firm and consultancy specializing in business intelligence for small and mid-sized organizations. For more than ten years, she has assisted clients in business systems analysis, software selection, and implementation of enterprise applications. Lyndsay conducts regular research studies, consults, writes articles and speaks about how to implement a successful BI approach and improving the value of business intelligence within organizations.

Affiliations and Expertise

President and Founder of WiseAnalytics, Toronto, CANADA

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