We aren’t the least bit surprised that the advent of streaming data sources has seen an equal rise in the number of analytics solutions claiming to be just as fast.

But recently we also came to a realization: they aren’t. Data is coming into these programs so fast and from so many different sources that by the time any kind of analysis is completed the moment has passed- in essence, you can only work with yesterday’s data.

We were wondering how you would put the “real” back in “real time,” in other words what would it take to create an analytics engine that anyone could understand as fast as the data itself changed?

Data is fast… very fast

It’s a fact. The catchphrase that most data companies and bloggers like to use is “volume, velocity and variety” to describe the fact that more data (volume) is being generated faster (velocity) and is coming from more places (variety) than ever before. But then again, that’s nothing  new. We, and others, have written about how this explosion of data is outpacing the analytics required to actually make use of it.

Here’s why- it’s all about speed. The faster data comes in the more time traditional analytic methods take to break it down into actionable stories. And it really doesn’t matter which analytic method you choose: you could go traditional and hire a data scientist to go over your rows and columns but that can be very expensive and time-consuming. You could rely on a dashboard, but those simply roll up the data into different charts and graphs that show you trends without context and, more importantly, without the details you need to actually understand the ‘why’ behind the pattern. To get down to those actionable details still takes time- and all the while more data is piling up.

But it doesn’t do any good to just point out problems with no solutions, so we are here to offer one. And it focuses on speed.

But you are faster

VisualCue was born from years of research and private, consultative trials for large organizations like the United States Postal Service and the Department of Defense. Through all of that research and the many iterations of the VisualCue platform one thing has remained constant- how do we take all that volume, velocity and variety and present it in a way that can be immediately understood and used by anyone, no training required?

It was quite the challenge, but eventually that’s what the VisualCue platform is all about. We use icons and colors because those are the things that the human visual system, just about the fastest biological system on the planet, recognizes the fastest. When you present data in that way your eyes intuitively, and immediately, pick out the pattern. We combine various data sources onto a single Tile because that is the best way to see the whole story and get those actionable details you need to start making meaningful, fact-based changes to your work.

That’s why we claim VisualCue is the only true real-time analytics platform. Because we present the data in a way anyone can understand just as fast as it comes in anyone using VisualCue has the opportunity to start making in-the-moment changes to their processes. When you can make data-driven decisions as the data is coming in you can start changing the game and making improvements that will affect how the rest of today goes, not just tomorrow.

Until next time,

The VisualCrew