Tag Archives: Business Intelligence

Salesforce buys Jigsaw

I like this move. This acquisition is an interesting and complementary addition to the suite. The sales and marketing department users should be very happy with this move.

Salesforce Puts Jigsaw Together

Written by Curt Hopkins / May 9, 2010 6:35 PM

Thanks, David

Thumbnail image for salesforce_logo09.jpg

Customer relationship management software company Salesforce has bought Jigsaw, according to an announcement from the company. The San Mateo, CA-based Jigsaw is a crowd-sourced business contact data outfit.

Salesforce delivers its information via cloud computing, as does Jigsaw, so their models match up.

“Jigsaw’s data cloud platform also creates an enormous opportunity for developers and independent software vendors to deliver entirely new applications that leverage the business contact data found in Jigsaw.”

This is in keeping with Salesforce’s emphasis on integrating other data and apps with Salesforce via its Service Cloud 2 system.

Jigsaw offers a searchable online database of business contacts, assembled, corrected and added to by the public at large, including the contacts themselves. This seems a good fit for Salesforce and a big selling point for their users and potential users.

jigsawLogo.gifJigsaw has built up a customer base of 1.2 million users in six years. Its data includes 21 million contacts at four million companies and serves 800 corporate clients. The deal is $142 million, plus performance contingent earns of up to 10% of the purchase.

via Salesforce Puts Jigsaw Together.


5 Web Apps To Keep Your Startup Organized [on a shoestring]

I also like YUGMA as a free alternative to GoToMeeting; have not used DimDim.

I’ve played with the Zoho CRM app and its an excellent Salesforce.com knock-off.

I just looked at an open source business intelligence application last week but the name escapes me.  It was really impressive.  If I find the name, I’ll add it here.

Throw MySQL and Linux into the mix and its amazing how much you can do on a shoestring.

5 Web Apps To Keep Your Startup Organized

Written by Chris Cameron / January 6, 2010 9:30 PM /

In a world where emails, phone calls, texts, and Tweets constantly bombard us, it is getting harder and harder to manage the firehose of data and information being thrust our way. For young companies to succeed this environment, it is imparitive they become organized and efficient lest they fall behind and quickly become overwhelmed.

While there is no shortage of online solutions, it can be hard to know which one is the right tool for the job, so here’s a list of five web applications to help kick-start your company and keep it organized without breaking the bank.

googleapps_logo_jan10.jpgGoogle Apps – Google’s collection of web apps includes solutions for corporate email accounts, calendars or contacts, but its best use for a new startup is with document sharing. Using Google Docs to collaborate on text documents, spreadsheets or even presentations is far more efficient than sending a file in an email attachment.

In recent years, Zoho has become an increasingly competitive enterprise alternative to Google, even adding integration with Google Apps. Zoho has also introduced more features that help it stand out against Google Apps, including their own CRM solution that aims to compete with Salesforce.com.

basecamp_logo_jan10.jpgBasecamp – We here at ReadWriteWeb use Basecamp on a daily basis for managing ongoing projects and reviewing edits of our stories. Developed by 37signals, Basecamp offers a great interface with an easily read dashboard of the latest activity, as well as to-do lists, milestones and email alerts.

For the on-the-go entrepreneur, there are a handful of mobile Basecamp apps ranging in features and price. Personally, I recommend using Insight for iPhone, which was rebranded from Encamp and recently recommended by 37signals.

dropbox_logo_jan10.jpgDropbox – Whether it’s large financial spreadsheets, or Photoshop mockups of your website-to-be, you are going to need somewhere to store all your files. Dropbox makes all of these easy and relatively inexpensive, offering up to 100 GB for $20 a month. But it’s not just storage.

Dropbox can automatically sync with folders on your desktop, creating an offsite backup of your vital startup files in the cloud, which any member of your staff can access. An alternative solution would be to use Box.net, however their pricing plans are higher than Dropbox’s and are aimed at larger corporations.

dimdim_logo_jan10.jpgDimdim – The next time you find yourself struggling to explain an intricate concept to your coworkers through a text document or presentation, check out Dimdim and use the power of screen-sharing to make your point crystal clear. One of Dimdim’s best features is that their product works entirely from within your web browser without the need to download or install any extra software.

Screen-sharing services like Dimdim can save a young company hundreds if not thousands of dollars in travel expenses by providing a much more efficient way to meet and share information. Also a notable service in this space is Citrix’s GoToMeeting. However, like Box.net to Dropbox, its pricing is much higher than Dimdim’s.

mindmeister_logo_jan10.jpgMindMeister – Between the last two semesters of graduate school, I worked on a collaborative ten-week reporting project, and used online mind-mapping app MindMeister extensively to stay organized. The application is a great way to keep those more abstract ideas organized in an easy-to-understand way.

Countless startups have mapped out their product ideas and business plans on giant whiteboards, and now the whiteboard has gone digital. MindMeister makes it easy to create and share mind maps and flow charts, and best of all, its free to get started.

Photo by Flickr user simax.

Microsoft BizSpark is a startup program that gives you three-year access to the latest Microsoft development tools, as well as connecting you to a nationwide network of investors and incubators. Click here to apply.

via 5 Web Apps To Keep Your Startup Organized – ReadWriteStart.

Google Smart Meter App Not Ready for Finals | Wired Science | Wired.com

Good thing that I’m not paranoid otherwise I’d  start thinking that Google is trying to take over the planet.  Not sure how smart meters fit into Google’s business model.  If I were a  stockholder, I would be seriously concerned about discipline.  Is there any or does everyone get to dabble in whatever strikes their fancy. Ahhhh…it’s so good to have money to burn; isn’t it?

Well, all gravy trains arrive at the end of the line eventually.  It will be interesting to see how management and the company reacts when that day occurs. Until then, I hope that they enjoy the ride. Myself, I love all the free toys and gadgets–keep it coming.  But then, I’m not a stockholder either.

Google Smart Meter App Not Ready for Finals

The Googles are coming! The Googles are coming!

Monday night, Google announced it is developing a software utility, PowerMeter, that allows you to track your energy usage. By communicating with an as-yet undeveloped set of hardware devices, the smart meter software could provide you with granular, real-time data about your energy usage.

In the tech world, everybody used to break into hives at the slightest hint that the all-knowing, all-seeing Google was going to enter their business, providing free tools and doing everything better.
But slowly people realized that Google isn’t the best company to do everything. They don’t always win, and they may well not win here either.

First, where’s all that data going to come from? Sure, Barack Obama’s stimulus plan calls for 40 million more smart meters to be installed, but as we noted last year, the functionality of these little devices varies widely. Some track things in real-time, others don’t.

And they’re expensive. The sensors required to track all of the major appliances in your home would be hundreds of dollars and Google isn’t just going to send you a kit with all of the smart devices.

Absent the data gathering ecosystem, all Google is really offering you is a graphing utility. And we’ve already seen plenty of companies, including the guys who made Flash, offer up similar or better products.

To become the de facto window into your energy usage, Google will have to use their size and weight to bring some standardization to smart metering practices. To do that, they’ll need hardware manufacturers to come out with very cheap Google-ready devices and then they’ll have talk dozens of utilities into eschewing their own smart meter plans to follow Google’s lead.

Or they’ll have to get the government to mandate that Google’s approach is correct. This could be where Google earns its money. Some utilities aren’t really interested in helping consumers cut their usage — what they’re really after is just simply knowing how much power people are using at any given, so they know when they have to fire up their expensive, dirty peaker power plants. Smart-meter makers have responded with products that aren’t always consumer friendly or even consumer facing.

Google, on the other hand, has a vested interest in making sure that information is freely available in real-time and that it can be tied to real-time electricity pricing information. That’s a very consumer-friendly approach — and we’re glad to see someone pushing that agenda.

They are already making their case in California. Expect them to apply legislative pressure all of the U.S., if they are really serious about controlling, err, organizing, your energy data.

via Google Smart Meter App Not Ready for Finals | Wired Science | Wired.com.

Data-Mining Medical Records Could Predict Domestic Violence

Here is a great application of business intelligence that positively affects lives.  Data mining and data presentation in action.  I love the presentation.  Its very clear and easy to read.

Back in the ’80s, in my youth, I was a Emergency Room EMT.  I know what an ER is like on a full moon weekend.  I also, unfortunately, saw plenty of DV cases.  So, knowing the ER environment and the dynamics of DV; I think this is great. I like this example of information making a difference.

From my days as an engineer and program manager in the Dept of Defense, before I got into IT, an important tenant I learned was that information has a useful life span.  So, just as important as the clarity of the format is the proper timing of delivery.  As I like to say: The right data, at the right time, in the right format, to the right people. We used to call it “Information Management”. Back then we had paper maps, used grease pens on glass, and a lot of wild dreams. We spent a lot of tax dollars to make those dreams reality that can now see the movie “Blackhawk Down”, which by the way is obsolete by now.

Well, the instrument in this example delivers the potential DV information to the right people at the right time, when it can actually used to intervene. That’s the critical difference. Now, the same mantra and concepts should be applied to business intelligence. The executives need to know the right things in the correct form at the right time.  To quote Austin Power’s Dr Evil: “I’m the boss, need the info”.

Data-Mining Medical Records Could Predict Domestic Violence
By Frederik Joelving Email Author
September 30, 2009  | 3:58 pm  |

“To a busy emergency physician, a split lip or a case of poisoning is just one of those things they deal with. But to a computer mining the patient’s medical history, it could be the last diagnosis needed to decipher a pattern of domestic violence.

Now, a group of researchers at Harvard University has created the first computer model to automatically detect the risk that a patient is being abused at home. The results were published Sept. 29 in the British Medical Journal.

“It’s a great concept,” said Debra Houry, an emergency physician at Emory University, who was not involved in the research. Although around one in four women experience domestic violence at some point in their lives, she says, the problem often goes unnoticed at a doctor’s visit. “It’s one of those hidden epidemics where they don’t come up to you and disclose the issue.” …”

Data-Mining Medical Records Could Predict Domestic Violence | Wired Science | Wired.com.