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February 2014

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2014 Meetings Kick Off with Oracle-Hosted BIWA Summit

The independent Oracle Business Intelligence, Data Warehousing, and Analytics (BIWA) special interest group kicked off its 2014 user meetings, special interest group summits, and training days by holding its annual BIWA Summit at Oracle headquarters from January 14 to 16.

BIWA Summit veterans noted that this was one of the largest conferences in recent history. Attendees got to hear from Oracle thought leaders on the latest innovations in data warehousing and business intelligence as well as from each other during a variety of customer case study and best practices presentations. And onsite hands-on labs provided an excellent opportunity for attendees to learn about new technologies.

Attendees also got access to a comprehensive portfolio of content at the conference, spanning data management, data mining, analytics, business intelligence, visualization, and more.

Clarke Patterson, senior director of Product Marketing for Cloudera, gave a keynote about the opportunity to lower costs and address new varieties of data by implementing an enterprise data hub. Maria Colgan, master product manager at Oracle, also provided a preview of the upcoming Oracle Database In-Memory option.

James Taylor, chief executive officer and principal consultant for Decision Management Solutions and an expert author, opened the BIWA Summit with a talk about real-time decision management. He discussed how predictive analytics can convert uncertainties about the future into usable probabilistic actions. Oracle ACE Director Brendan Tierney spoke about the use of Oracle Advanced Analytics for reducing dropout churn at universities and discussed the importance of human judgment in both setting up models and interpreting results. Miguel Barrera and Julia Minkowski from Fiserv delivered a presentation on the use of data mining techniques for fraud detection and risk management. Minkowski reminded the audience that data professionals are often too caught up in coming up with the perfect model and advised attendees on the need to spend more time evangelizing the benefits of their work to lines of business.

In the business intelligence and visualization arena, multiple sessions highlighted Oracle Fusion Middleware's MapViewer feature, which enables geographic visualization and manipulation of data. Oracle partners also demonstrated other creative uses of business intelligence technologies.

Overall, the conference gave data warehousing and business intelligence professionals an opportunity to connect and learn about the latest data management and analytics technologies. Clearly technologies have become even more powerful and capable for serving a wide variety of decision support applications. As Tierney mentioned, it's up to human judgment and intelligence to properly leverage technologies to effectively formulate data problems and interpret analytical solutions. Visit the BIWA Summit registration page for more information and access to the presentations library.

The BIWA Summit is just the start of many meetings to come during 2014. Here are a few upcoming events.

Don't see yours listed? Message or tweet the details to @OracleDatabase. We'd love to help get the word out about any important sessions where great information is exchanged.
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