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Endeca Combines Search and Business Intelligence in Hybrid Enterprise App

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Posted October 4, 2010 By David Needle     Feedback

Endeca Latitude features a hybrid search-analytical database that can be used for a wide range of enterprise applications.

Enterprise search provider Endeca Technologies says its latest release makes typically complex business intelligence (BI) applications more accessible.

Endeca Latitude, released Monday, gives IT a centralized platform for deploying BI applications across a wide range of diverse and changing data sets. The company said Latitude gives end users more direct access to up-to-date information from data warehouses and others repositories than other solutions that require more engagement with IT.

"We've combined the simplicity of search and the power of BI," Paul Sonderegger, chief strategist at Endeca, told "What impact that has in the organization is that it improves daily decision-making and helps IT clear its BI backlog."

Major IT players, like IBM (NYSE: IBM), Oracle (NASAQ: ORCL) and SAP (NYSE: SAP), are fiercely competing in the BI market with products that promise to unlock the vast amounts of data stored in enterprise repositories to help companies make quicker, better informed decisions for everything from identifying problems in the supply chain, to the best products sales reps should pitch to customers.

Endeca's solution is powered by its MDEX engine technology, which it describes as the industry's only hybrid search-analytical database that collects information regardless of data type, format or source to provide both search and analytics features. Endeca calls the approach, 'No data left behind.'

Sonderegger uses a real customer example of a commodity manager at an automotive manufacturer as an example of how Latitude works. In addition to all the data and information the company has on parts, suppliers and sales, Latitude also collects information from the service stations, including unstructured content (e.g. comments) included in warranty claims.

"Before Endeca, maybe the company is seeing an increase in claims on brakes that need to be replaced. But the manager isn't sure why that is happening and he's not sure of the exact questions to ask; typically this would involve putting a request into IT to analyze all the warranty claims and figure out if the problem is in the pads, or the rotors or something else. It's very time consuming, because the answers in a report IT generates can often lead to more questions," said Sonderegger.

By contrast, he said Latitude unifies all the information from suppliers and service stations to help the manager figure out where the problem is and if, for example, the supplier should cover the warranty claims.

"One discovery application is worth a thousand reports," said Sonderegger. "The back and forth for custom reports is dramatically shortened and the conclusion you get is often better."

Endeca calls the BI applications companies can build with Endeca Latitude discovery applications. Latitude's Discovery Framework includes a library of components the company said delivers advanced search capabilities. With Latitude, Endeca claims companies can respond more quickly to changing business conditions by re-designing reports and dashboards in minutes, incorporating diverse data sources in days. The company said new applications can be deployed in a few weeks.

David Needle is the West Coast bureau chief at, the news service of, the network for technology professionals.

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