Platfora: This West Coast data company has officially waged war on the “gut decision” with the use of tools that provide flexible and agile data parsing for colleges and businesses alike. Platfora makes data available for analyzing in a distinctly interactive way while making the solution scalable as data grows.

“Here’s an industry secret that lies beneath all the news hype on big data today: after two decades of nonstop advances in business intelligence technologies, organizational leaders are still using their gut to make decisions 95 percent of the time,” Platfora CEO Ben Werther said in March at a data conference. “The reason why is because most people cannot get their hands on accurate decision-support information in time.”

Civitas Learning: The Austin-based company uses a cloud-based analytics platform to provide real-time suggestions to faculty, administrators, and students by aggregating information from student enrollment data, financial aid profiles and learning management systems. The Civitas tools parse data from more than 3 million student records and 15 million course enrollment records to offer recommendations on decisions like selecting a degree and identifying at-risk students.

YarcData: This company’s unique approach to analyzing Big Data is centered around a focus on a discovery process that “demands the ability to ask questions in an ad hoc, iterative fashion, to add new data sources on the fly as required, and to do all of this without modeling the data beforehand.” Understanding data, the company charges, is hard work, and oftentimes messy even for experienced technologists.

“The essence of what discovery is cannot be changed to fit an analytics engine and still be discovery. We get it,” YarcData’s website reads. “That’s why we built Urika – purpose-built real-time platform for big data discovery.”


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