What if you wanted to transform data into actionable insights that impact people's lives in new and extraordinary ways? Would you do this with a business intelligence suite on premises or with a non-scalable self-service software? Probably not.
Likely, you would be looking for a cloud-based platform that increases your agility while creating a high business value. You would, therefore, be looking for services that tap into a broad transformation of data analytics to reach real people.
That's the message coming from Waqar Hasan, senior vice president, Oracle Big Data Analytics. In front of a packed crowd at Oracle headquarters, Hasan put a very real face on Oracle Cloud Platform Autonomous Services by explaining how Oracle is using its own tools to help government agencies fight against the current opioid epidemic.
"This is a crisis that affects the lives of people in cities and towns, across all income levels and backgrounds," Hasan said.
Photo courtesy of Rich Clayton
The opioid epidemic has been wreaking havoc in the United States alone with 116 people dying every day in the last few years from opioid-related drug overdoses, according to the US Department of Health and Human Services. The crisis has also resulted in 2.1 million people reporting they have an opioid use disorder and accrued $504 billion in economic costs in the same time frame.
To combat the epidemic, government agencies are analyzing the data and using new tools to spot trends. Hasan noted that Oracle researchers helped identify one important factor in the research: the role of the prescribing doctor's gender.
"Our data found that women doctors prescribed opioids far less often than their male counterparts," Hasan said. "We combed through billions of lines of data and hundreds of different data markers in two days and came up with these results."
By accelerating that time to insight, the hope is that leaders can derive insights quickly and prevent more tragedies.
The realization of faster time to insight and the path towards autonomous cloud platforms is the result of a progression of analytics acumen that has developed in three stages as seen in the graphic below.
First, the semantic models helped with data analysis and alignment across functions, and was used on premises. Next, the evolution of self-service, accelerated use became widespread over the past few years particularly in the cloud. Thirdly and most recently is the promise of autonomy, taking insight and decision making to a new level.
Today, humans are doing most of the work. Data from existing sources is combined. The consumer works by executing queries, then gets insight by interacting with visual representations of the data, and builds models to predict future trends or outcomes. These are all managed and controlled by people.
"We believe that the future of Business Analytics is Adaptive and Autonomous," Hasan said. "This means using machine learning to power the Business Analytics value chain. The value chain for data starts with discovery, moves to preparing and augmenting data, then to analysis, modeling and finally to prediction. it is data-driven and is a powerful platform for innovation."
Context is also important, Hasan noted. It must understand "Who I am, Where I am, What I am doing. What do I need to know right now?" The system must serve up the best information possible in this very specific situation.
"This automation is helped by the power of the cloud, of course, but also technologies such as natural language processing, geolocation, voice-enabled queries, anticipation of questions through machine learning, and data visualization."
As part of his speech to business analytics and data experts, Hasan also announced Oracle Data Visualization Desktop to be offered for free with the Oracle Autonomous Data Warehouse Cloud.