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New Technologies in a Big Data World

Low-/No-Code Technologies

With today’s emerging generation of low- and no-code technologies, business end users have opportunities to design their own front-end applications or data queries without the involvement of harried IT staff members. “Low-code and no-code technologies are dramatically changing the way data is managed and used by non-database experts,” said Michael Berthold, CEO of KNIME. “With low-code and no-code tools, business users have the ability to explore data on their own, which, in turn, reduces dependence on IT teams. This also decreases delays and repetitive work, which naturally allows for faster insights. Low- and no-code environments have also enabled IT professionals to collaborate more efficiently with domain experts, pushing some of the customization into the hands of the actual users and, again, freeing IT from that continuous stream of refinement requests related to the analysis of data.”

Progress: Low-code and no-code technology “has made significant progress and is becoming an increasingly popular tool in today’s business environment,” said Berthold. “It’s estimated that 70% of new business applications will use low-code and no-code technologies by 2025.”

Challenges: Low-code and no-code tools pose some risks that need to be mitigated. “For starters, businesses may struggle with security issues when working with low-code and no-code technology,” said Berthold. “For instance, integrating low- and no-code applications with external systems and services is a complex endeavor. To ensure the highest level of security, businesses must ensure proper authentication and authorization procedures are followed; they must also establish secure communication procedures across the organization.”

Scaling low- and no-code applications to meet ever-expanding data requirements also poses a challenge. “Low-code and no-code technology can also be challenging to scale,” said Berthold. “As a program grows in complexity, so does the amount of data it’s asked to process. Furthermore, performance will also be impacted in a growing low- and no-code model; it’s vital that businesses provide the necessary infrastructure to support expanding application requirements.”

Business benefits: Low- and no-code tools deliver benefits ranging from “faster application development, increased productivity, cost savings, easier cross-departmental collaboration, the empowerment of citizen developers, workflow automation, and of course, the democratization of data,” said Berthold.

Real-Time Processing

The shift toward real-time data processing and analytics is resetting the way organizations need to manage data. This is evident “with the rise of IoT devices, the need for instant insights, and the ubiquity of big data, the ability to process, analyze, and deliver actionable data in real time,” said Igor Volovich, VP of compliance strategy at Qmulos. “This represents a fundamental shift from batch processing models and is revolutionizing industries from healthcare to finance and beyond.”

Progress: “Paradoxically, most organizations continue to maintain functional silos that artificially segregate data and analytics, delaying the necessary transformation toward real time,” Volovich said. “Adoption levels vary.”

Challenges: A significant challenge is “the coexistence of legacy data architectures with next-gen technologies like cloud and data lakes,” said Volovich. “This juxtaposition often leads to data silos, disrupted data flows, and increased complexity in data management, hindering the ability to gain real-time insights. The technological incongruity also results in increased complexity of data management and governance, creating a higher risk of noncompliance with data protection regulations. Thus, the dichotomy between legacy and modern data architectures is a significant hurdle for enterprises attempting to fully embrace and benefit from new data paradigms.”

In addition, Volovich continued, “The shortage of experts who can effectively manage and extract value from this constant stream of data is a substantial impediment.”

Business benefits: The potential benefits of real-time data processing are extensive, Volovich explained, “ranging from improved decision making and operational efficiency to enhanced customer experience and innovative business models. It allows organizations to act on instantaneous insights, address issues promptly, and anticipate trends before they fully materialize. Adoption holds the promise of a highly responsive, trusted, resilient, secure, and data-driven business environment, with a direct positive impact on a company’s bottom line. Continuous control monitoring, convergence, and compliance automation should be considered areas of priority investment for organizations embracing modern data management concepts.”

Federated Technologies

In today’s highly distributed enterprises, federated technologies offer a means “to overcome data silos, strengthen strategic partnerships, and maximize return on investment,” said Erin Boelkens, VP of product at LiveRamp. “Federated technologies allow organizations to minimize data movement and process it where it lives. This technology comes with massive improvements in the efficiency of delivering valuable solutions as well as a reduction in cost by removing the need for data duplication, which drives down storage and compute costs, as well as significantly reducing or even eliminating egress costs.”

Progress: The industry has only begun “uncovering all of the possibilities for this federated technology,” said Boelkens. “It can be applied across a vast array of industries and use cases as it matures. Federation will grow in adoption as enterprises continue to utilize the cloud for data collaboration between internal teams or with external partners, while privacy-enhancing technologies and data clean rooms become more mainstream.”

Challenges: “A potential roadblock to making this technology easily deployable and interoperable is if the major clouds were to change the way integrations into their platforms work, or put controls in place that would block the sharing of data outside of their own environments,” Boelkens cautioned. “I don’t anticipate the clouds doing this, as all the major cloud players know that this is not a winnertake- all game.”

Business benefits: Federated technology will lead to faster processing speeds and reduced storage and compute costs. The greatest benefit, however, “is the added protection of consumer data it enables,” said Boelkens. “By minimizing the movement of data, companies are able to better protect consumer information while simultaneously improving data’s ability to drive value for the business. Data collaboration, powered by federated technology, allows the companies that serve these consumers to better understand and interact with them through strategic collaboration with partners, who are also looking to build better relationships and outcomes for and with their clients.

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