Sramana Mitra: What you described is reasonably accurate as far as my observation is concerned. The pure infrastructure layer is overcrowded and overfunded. The opportunity is in the domain knowledge and knowing what heuristics can move the needle on top of that horizontal infrastructure.
Todd Goldman: What you want to do is combine knowledge of a vertical space and go find a good graphical UI type person who is good at visualization. The difference between the winners and losers, for anybody who enters a particular vertical space, the ability to show results and make those results compelling are going to be the major break. Fabulous visualization on top of good analytics will beat out fantastic analytics with mediocre visualization.
SM: That is interesting. Part of the problem the industry is facing is that there aren’t many sophisticated data scientists available. Therefore, you need help from technology to be able to help reasonable people with reasonable expertise to be able to make good business decisions. What you are saying is in support of that general situation.
TG: Absolutely. I think that is true for each layer of the stack. At the integration layer, which is where we play, we see all those people who are used to using graphical tools in the prior world of data integration, and that is expected. We move forward to Hadoop and everything starts over again, where you have a bunch of young people who learn Hive and Pig – that is usually what happens. Students come out of the university and say, “Oh, we will hand code all this.” Then the whole process starts all over again.
We are still at the beginning of that [process]. For each layer of the stack, there is a ton of investment happening. The big opportunity is for people to build true business breakthrough ideas by having a completely vertical approach. True innovation tends to happen at the boundaries of different disciplines. To the extent that Hadoop can allow merge analytics and someone can apply visualization on top of superior analytics, that combination is incredibly powerful, and we are going to see some great companies come out of that combination.
SM: Thank you, Todd. Take care.
TG: Thank you so much.