By: Jonathan Agee
By: Jonathan Agee
I’m writing this as I fly home to Dallas from Alteryx Inspire 2017. What a fantastic conference packed full of great content, but more importantly, great people! What a phenomenal community of men and women have come together around Alteryx and the mission of making today’s analysts the superheroes of modern organizations. For those of you who couldn’t make it to Inspire, I’d like to share the top 10 takeaways that have me excited about where Alteryx is headed:1. The Thrill of Solving
Whether you got a chance to talk to Alteryx’s new CMO, Seth Greenberg, or not, you would have gotten a taste for Alteryx’s latest messaging. From the new T-shirts to the keynote videos, the message came through loud and clear. Alteryx is all about making data analytics thrilling for all involved. Whether you are an analyst who loves to solve problems or a C-suite executive thrilled by the impact data analytics is having on the bottom line, the stories of how Alteryx is making a difference in people’s lives are the heartbeat of this message.
Alteryx Connect is the most significant product announcement coming out of Inspire 2017. With Alteryx Connect, we are seeing Alteryx make a bid to put itself at the center of the modern data analytics pipeline. Connect is designed to help business users in the critical first steps of the analytics process, determining where to find the right data. How? By creating a collaboration and data exploration platform that recommends the data assets and reports relevant information while connecting you to the people in your organization who can help speed up your analytics effort. Alteryx Connect will initially be available in the upcoming release of Alteryx 11.5 as an add-on for Alteryx Server.
On Tuesday, June 6, Alteryx announced the acquisition of New York-based company Yhat for an undisclosed amount. With the acquisition, Alteryx is bringing into their portfolio a platform for advanced analytics model management, deployment and integration into real-time solutions. Yhat’s product ScienceOps allows companies to deploy operational analytics models in the cloud or on premise in a fraction of the time traditionally required. As we heard in the keynote, the only thing worse than a bad model is a good model that doesn’t get deployed. When you consider the fact that only 13% of created models actually get deployed to production, you can see how there is a lot of room for improvement here.
As Dean Stoecker unveiled Alteryx Connect in his welcome keynote, he also showed us how Alteryx is creating a truly next-generation platform for data analytics that incorporates the entire range of Alteryx products and places Alteryx squarely in the center of the modern analytics pipeline. The combination of Alteryx Connect for discovering and sharing data assets, Alteryx Designer for data preparation, analytics, and modeling, and Alteryx Server and Yhat products for deployment and model management creates a complete platform to support today’s data and analytics culture.
In his product keynote on Tuesday, Dean Stoecker reminded us that as we move from a world with Yotabytes of data to Brontobytes (10^27) of data, the Chief Data Officer (CDO) is taking on the mantle of responsibility for ensuring that organizations are leveraging the value of the data assets they own. Alteryx is positioning itself to be the best friend of the CDO as they provide an end-to-end platform for data analytics that is designed with business people in mind.
In his presentation on Wednesday, CTO Ned Harding walked us through the work Alteryx has undertaken to rewrite the underlying engine to take advantage of the modern chipset’s parallel processing capabilities. As this new engine is rolled out, it will result in speed increases directly proportional to the number of cores you have for many of the core tools that you use in your workflows. Typical servers are seeing a 10X improvement in processing speed. Alteryx is already fast. This will make it scream.
Finally, it is coming! A new, better and easier-to-use reporting tool that will enable you to deliver results of your analysis much easier. This will include a drag-and-drop canvas that lets you place reporting artifacts and then print or publish. We heard how customers are using Alteryx reporting tools to deliver individually customized batch reports to millions of people.
Alteryx promoted their “Alteryx for Good” program (soon to be a foundation) very boldly… as they said: “There is more to life than work. At Alteryx, we’re passionate about giving back to worthy causes…” The conference included a call to support Take My Hand Uganda. Alteryx also recognized some great community members who have really taken to heart this call and are using their talents with analytics to further great causes around the world.
If you were at Inspire, it was hard to miss the orange shirts walking around and glowing in the keynotes. Teknion had the privilege of being a featured partner throughout the conference. On Tuesday night, we hosted the Inspire 2017 Gala at Brooklyn Bowl. Everyone enjoyed the bowling, music, drinks and, of course, the company. On Wednesday, Teknion was named Alteryx Partner of the Year, North America. This is a great honor for us and our team and we thank all of those who helped us get there. Probably one of the funniest moments of the conference was when keynote speaker and author of Freakonomics stopped mid-sentence to call out the Teknion team, because he all of a sudden noticed the glowing orange shirts in the audience.
In the farewell keynote, Alteryx announced that next year Inspire will return to Southern California and will be held at the Anaheim Convention Center from June 4-7. We look forward to seeing you all there and continuing to play our part in this great community that is committed to changing the world through data analytics.