Sponsored by NeutrinoBI
In this paper, we describe freeform search–a method that enables business users with no knowledge of data structures and relationships to explore for themselves their structured business data in a wholly unstructured and adaptive manner.
Imagine a naive business intelligence user simply typing “Sales of dis-counted women’s footwear in Manchester this month” into a search box and receiving back a ranked list of 35 valid, current query results that satisfy this search. Imagine her eyeballing the graphical representations of these results, noticing an unusual spike in sales returns and searching for “Returns by stores where bought in the northern region”. Then diving into the credit cards associated with the sales with returns in different stores. And the Eureka moment…
The example briefly portrays a process of innovative exploration that many of us are used to doing on the Internet using simple keyword searches of Web content. Today, we call it googling. It is a process that has proven elusive for users of enterprise business intelligence systems for years.
“And now for something completely different…” In this paper, we describe freeform search–a method that enables business users with no knowledge of data structures and relationships to explore for themselves their structured business data in a wholly unstructured and adaptive manner. We explain how an information context can be created automatically that supports reliable parsing and interpretation of such freeform searches and also enables agile and speedy delivery of this functionality to end users with minimal IT involvement. And we introduce neutrinoBI, a new product that implements freeform search against data in a combination of data warehouse, data mart and personal data stores and delivers valuable and innovative business insights to decision makers with limited data skills and minimal IT involvement.