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Analytics 2015

Rome as capital of analytics culture

The three-days educational and business event held in Italy gathered more than 700 professionals, industry experts and researchers in the field of analytics giving them the chance to learn about the latest technologies and visions, in order to build an analytics culture within their organizations.
Along with the plenary and breakout sessions, the demo live area represented a great opportunity to dig a little bit deeper into the latest SAS solutions.


9-11 November Italy became the global homeland of the analytics culture: the international SAS event on analytics took place for the first time in Rome. Analytics 2015, a three-day conference for anyone who is serious about analytics, has gathered more than 700 professionals, industry experts and leading researchers in the field of analytics, coming from all over the world.

Building the analytics culture

After a full-day totally dedicated to training courses, the event started with the opening address by Carl Farrell, Executive Vice President & Chief Revenue Officer, SAS: “Analytics have been around for many years, existing in specialized areas or to support specific tasks. But now that’s changed. In a rapidly short time, analytics became a mainstream tool for businesses, within private and government sectors. The amount of data has reached a new scale and, with the power of analytics, can transform the way of life for everyone”. According to Farrell, Internet of Things has been pushing the data volumes and the speed of streaming at levels never seen before; in the future, every company will be a digital enterprise, not regarding its primary focus, and the data will became the key factor to succeed.

Farrell explained the SAS vision about analytics culture, built essentially with two main ingredients: technology (in-memory computing, cloud, mobile devices, analytics, machine learning, new security tools and all other innovations that are foundation solutions for Internet of Things) and people.

“With the rapid adoption of analytics the need of new skills and data scientists has been increased” Farrell said. “SAS put its effort on education, bringing at the schools and universities the required knowledge and experience to the students. We deliver graduate programs in analytics and we offer free SAS software to support the next generation of analytics talents. This year we have strengthened our commitment and announced The SAS Academy for Data Science”. The main goal of those initiatives is helping the companies to create the analytics culture: “Culture is not something that happens, but a conscious effort, built piece by piece for many years” Farrell concluded.

Training courses and breakout sessions

Analytics 2015 in Rome offered a great opportunity to understand the latest IT and business trends in the digital era, giving some interesting highlights about SAS vision. But also represented a perfect situation to dig a little bit deeper into the latest analytics topics and technologies with the training courses, breakout sessions and demo areas.

The leap toward big data analytics requires new tools, strategies and skills: on November the 9th, the series of training courses provided the attendees with precious information to improve their analytics knowledge and pump up their professional profiles at an higher stage.

During the next two days, the breakout sessions gave participants some examples on how it’s possible to gain business value from SAS solutions: many relevant use cases were illustrated by the speakers from international public and private organizations (partners, customers, universities) in various industries (Telecommunication, Banking & Financial Services, Government, Retail & Services, Transportation & Energy). The focus of the presentations was on different analytics areas, such as Data Visualization Innovation, High Performance Analytics & Analytics of Things, Customer Analytics Journey, Predictive Analytics and Big Data World.

Best practices and demo live area

Along with these sessions, SAS global experts showed how to maximize the capabilities and the advantages of SAS solutions (for example, SAS Factory Miner, SAS Visual Analytics and SAS Visual Statistics, SAS Decision Manager), sharing best practices for deployment and usage.

The last (but not least) ingredient of Analytics 2015 was the demo live area, where the attendees could meet the experts from SAS or partners and have an hands-on experience about all the potentials of SAS tools. There were six demo areas presented by SAS, focused on the latests solutions and updates (SAS Lab for Hadoop, SAS Factory Miner as the key step to automate and simplify operational decisions, Forecast Server Client, SAS Contextual Analysis, SAS Stress Testing, SAS Event Stream Processing as a way to accelerate the data streaming and decisions). Some demo sessions also were presented by SAS partners (Accenture, EMC, IBM, MapR, Capgemini, CEGEKA).

Continue reading: the Plenary Session...

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