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London Hosts Business Intelligence Show.

The first day of London's 13th Business Intelligence exhibition yesterday was noticeable by its lack of major announcements from big players, and a host of launches from the younger outfits. There were a few key exceptions, including Seagate Software's plan to give out millions of 50-seat BI tool licenses for free (see related story). Cognos Inc was demonstrating its Visualizer tool, which evidently "leverages human visual perception" (read: draws pretty graphs based on data drawn from multiple sources), and Brio Technology Inc was showing off its Enterprise 6.0 suite, which it expects to start shipping next week.

The up-and-coming players were more evident. Two-year-old BI software vendor MineShare Inc announced version three of its suite, including a new object-oriented development tool and enterprise information portal (EIP). MineShare Navigator, the front-end, is essentially an extension to Microsoft Excel, which lets the user create reports against data cubes created using Architect, its warehouse creation tool, using a familiar environment. The MineShare layer is completely transparent to the end user, who only sees an Excel screen with additional menu functions. One addition is the ability to publish reports via email or to the back-end EIP tool, which creates personalized html pages based on reports created using Navigator. MineShare Objects is the second new addition to the suite, and adds a COM interface layer to allow the automation of report building. The launch coincided with the opening of its first European office, in London, headed up by Dr Nigel Geary, poached from Arbor Software. MineShare offers a th ree-day trial implementation proposal, in which it builds a BI system for prospective customers in three days, to show the benefits and speed of data reporting. The firm boasts that of its fourteen customers, only one backed out of the buy, going instead to main rival Arbor, which MineShare says, has lost five customers to it.

Data warehouse management tools vendor Pine Cone Systems Inc launched its Activity Tracker v1.0, an application which allows IT departments to monitor traffic to and from databases and warehouses in real time. The software monitors access to information in real-time to highlight possible bottlenecking of systems, and is marketed at users wishing to analyze help desk performance, service levels and access abuse. The product will be resold in the UK by GA Information Systems Ltd in a deal across the Pine Cone product range announced yesterday. The firm, founded by data warehousing "father" Bill Inmon, also announced a 30-day trial version of its Usage Monitor will be bundled by BMC Software Inc in its Enterprise Data Propagation suite.

UK firm WhiteLight Systems Ltd previewed its Analytical Application Server v2.0, to be released next month. The software allows the building of analytical applications using what WhiteLight calls IDP (Integrated Decision Processing). IDP is WhiteLight's vision of the next stage of BI, a system which allows the large-scale extrapolation of possible future business performance based on past data and simulated potential business changes. The server product is independent of reporting tool (you can use Brio, Cognos, whatever) and data source, sitting between the two, letting business people program simulations using non-technical rules.
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Publication:Computergram International
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jun 17, 1999
Words:523
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