Saturday, October 30, 2010

Windows Azure Market Place ( Data Market and App Market ) - Potential jobs for BI Tools

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Windows Azure Market Place is a cloud based service offering on the Azure platform from Microsoft . For those who are completely unaware of Azure, I can say that I find it synonymous to Amazon Web Services in the making. Services available or to-be available on this platform can be divided in two parts: Data Market and App Market.

Data Market which was formerly know as Microsoft Codename "Dallas" is now commercially available, and this announcement was made very recently. Also many other significant announcements for the Windows Azure Market Place, which can be read from
here. App Market which is another section of services related to application development and hosting would be commercially released, probably early next year.

My area of interest revolves around data market. Data Market being a platform of data / content providers is a potential future candidate to be considered as a vital data source on the cloud. Traditionally we were used to see data sources as only in-premise databases like SQL Server, Oracle, Teradata, DB2 and others. But with the advent of cloud, we also see SQL Azure as a data source today. In my views if this platform evolves considerably, there is a bright scope that this is the probable new data source on the cloud.

Also this opens up jobs for MS BI Tools, especially SSIS and SSRS. I definitely see a requirement to merge data from different data providers that one might have subscribed, and create reports which is facilitated by Excel / Excel Add-In presently, can be replaced by SSRS. Data access from this platform is facilitated through REST APIs or OData, and MS BI Tools lack this support. But by the time DataMarket gains adoption as well as maturity from partners and consumers, we can expect MS BI tools to provide support for the same. Powerpivot is already aligned by Microsoft to serve the data analysis needs. Interestingly Tableau which is one of the leaders in data analysis software with it's huge range of data visualizations, is one of the technology partners and is providing support for data analysis from DataMarket. Check out the announcement of integration between Tableau and DataMarket from here.

To have a first look at the DataMarket section of Windows Azure Market Place, check out this video.

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