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GoodData launches overhauled analytics platform

Featuring a suite of microservices, GoodData released its new platform after nearly two years spent overhauling each of its individual capabilities.

After nearly two years overhauling its analytics platform, GoodData on Wednesday released the full-powered version of its new cache of capabilities.

The Production Editions of GoodData.CN (cloud native) unveiled Wednesday -- Free, Growth and Enterprise -- are more full-featured versions of the Community Edition of the platform GoodData unveiled in April. The Community Edition was a free version with limited range designed essentially to test the efficacy of the overhauled platform and demonstrate its capabilities.

Before overhauling its analytics capabilities, GoodData, an analytics vendor founded in 2007 and based in San Francisco, previously delivered a traditional analytics platform with embedded BI capabilities at its core.

But Roman Stanek, GoodData's founder and CEO, decided that the vendor's approach to BI was inefficient in its existing form. BI as a whole, he said, had become outdated as a standalone capability.

It was essentially a monolith, an environment unto itself disconnected from users' actual workflows where users were forced to spend significant time to derive insights from their data and toggle between their BI tools in one environment and the environment where they do their daily work.

Traffic data in San Francisco is displayed on a sample dashboard from GoodData.
A sample dashboard from GoodData shows the severity of traffic accidents in San Francisco.

In response, GoodData decided to rebuild its platform tool by tool with the intention of building what Stanek called a "headless" analytics platform, developing capabilities that enable analytics apart from a single user interface.

GoodData.CN is data as a service, according to Stanek. It's a series of cloud-based microservices that enable analytics on demand and work with data where it's stored in the cloud rather than requiring users to extract, transform and load data and send it back and forth between databases and user interfaces.

"I believe that BI is fundamentally broken," Stanek said. "It's essentially peripheral. It's almost like an island. We now have things like the cloud, DataOps, DevOps. There are so many new ways and processes for how to generate data, how to analyze data, how to make things better, cheaper and faster, and then there is BI."

I believe that BI is fundamentally broken. It's essentially peripheral. It's almost like an island.
Roman StanekFounder and CEO, GoodData

GoodData.CN, therefore, was designed to rescue BI from its island and integrate it into the processes of organizations.

"Any truly transformable technology needs to become invisible," Stanek said. "If I need to go to [a BI platform] to analyze data, that's a bank. Having a broad set of options -- embedding, enabling notifications, making it part of machine learning models -- needs to be possible."

Developed with Docker containers and running on Kubernetes clusters, the overhauled GoodData analytics platform is a suite of modular services that communicate with one another. Each module is contained in its own interface and capable of supporting a specific individual task.

The "headless" engine underlying the microservices is a series of application programming interfaces that make the platform flexible, enabling organizations to develop their own sources of metrics and user interfaces, according to Stanek.

It's an approach that will benefit GoodData's users, according to Mike Leone, senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group.

"As-a-service [means] to let the vendor take on the operational burdens in an increasingly distributed world and let the business focus on the data," he said. "That means empowering experts to more easily build modern applications infused with data, and empowering non-technical end users to interact and analyze data with guardrails."

Empowering non-technical users is critical, Leone added. Organizations are more able to act and react quickly amid constant change when frontline employees are enabled to work with data, and that agility spurs growth.

"Organizations continue to struggle in ramping up more employees to leverage data," he said. "GoodData's DaaS approach will focus on democratizing data by providing end users with the tools to instill confidence and improve data literacy when it comes to accessing and analyzing data on their terms."

While the Community Edition of GoodData.CN released in April is a free demo with one Docker container, the Production Editions come in three pricing options.

The Free version is just that and is for simple production deployments. The Growth version is aimed at self-service users and costs $20 per workspace, per month. Finally, the Enterprise version is for large-scale production deployments and its pricing is customized.

With the Production Editions of GoodData.CN now generally available and the vendor's platform overhaul complete, Stanek said GoodData plans to focus on data federation to enable to users to query data from multiple sources at once, advanced data governance to help customers organize and oversee their data, and the development of a marketplace of applications to access data.

In addition, a GoodData.CN version that addresses streaming analytics could be part of the roadmap, according to Stanek

"This new [microservices] model gives us a completely new trajectory," he said. "We are moving away from the self-contained model, and the number of permutations how that will get deployed is unknown. That's exciting."

Enterprise Strategy Group is a division of TechTarget.

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