Here is an interview with Mike Boyarski , Director Product Marketing at Jaspersoft
the largest BI community with over 14 million downloads, nearly 230,000 registered members, representing over 175,000 production deployments, 14,000 customers, across 100 countries.
Ajay- Describe your career in science from Biology to marketing great software.
Mike- I studied Biology with the assumption I’d pursue a career in medicine. It took about 2 weeks during an internship at a Los Angeles hospital to determine I should do something else. I enjoyed learning about life science, but the whole health care environment was not for me. I was initially introduced to enterprise-level software while at Applied Materials within their Microcontamination group. I was able to assist with an internal application used to collect contamination data. I later joined Oracle to work on an Oracle Forms application used to automate the production of software kits (back when documentation and CDs had to be physically shipped to recognize revenue). This gave me hands on experience with Oracle 7, web application servers, and the software development process.
I then transitioned to product management for various products including application servers, software appliances, and Oracle’s first generation SaaS based software infrastructure. In 2006, with the Siebel and PeopleSoft acquisitions underway, I moved on to Ingres to help re-invigorate their solid yet antiquated technology. This introduced me to commercial open source software and the broader Business Intelligence market. From Ingres I joined Jaspersoft, one of the first and most popular open source Business Intelligence vendors, serving as head of product marketing since mid 2009.
Ajay- Describe some of the new features in Jaspersoft 4.1 that help differentiate it from the rest of the crowd. What are the exciting product features we can expect from Jaspersoft down the next couple of years.
Mike- Jaspersoft 4.1 was an exciting release for our customers because we were able to extend the latest UI advancements in our ad hoc report designer to the data analysis environment. Now customers can use a unified intuitive web-based interface to perform several powerful and interactive analytic functions across any data source, whether its relational, non-relational, or a Big Data source.
The reality is that most (roughly 70%) of todays BI adoption is in the form of reports and dashboards. These tools are used to drive and measure an organizations business, however, data analysis presents the most strategic opportunity for companies because it can identify new opportunities, efficiencies, and competitive differentiation. As more data comes online, the difference between those companies that are successful and those that are not will likely be attributed to their ability to harness data analysis techniques to drive and improve business performance. Thus, with Jaspersoft 4.1, and our improved ad hoc reporting and analysis UI we can effectively address a broader set of BI requirements for organizations of all sizes.
Ajay- What do you think is a good metric to measure influence of an open source software product – is it revenue or is it number of downloads or number of users. How does Jaspersoft do by these counts.
Mike- History has shown that open source software is successful as a “bottoms up” disrupter within IT or the developer market. Today, many new software projects and startup ventures are birthed on open source software, often initiated with little to no budget. As the organization achieves success with a particular project, the next initiative tends to be larger and more strategic, often displacing what was historically solved with a proprietary solution. These larger deployments strengthen the technology over time.
Thus, the more proven and battle tested an open source solution is, often measured via downloads, deployments, community size, and community activity, usually equates to its long term success. Linux, Tomcat, and MySQL have plenty of statistics to model this lifecycle. This model is no different for open source BI.
The success to date of Jaspersoft is directly tied to its solid proven technology and the vibrancy of the community. We proudly and openly claim to have the largest BI community with over 14 million downloads, nearly 230,000 registered members, representing over 175,000 production deployments, 14,000 customers, across 100 countries. Every day, 30,000 developers are using Jaspersoft to build BI applications. Behind Excel, its hard to imagine a more widely used BI tool in the market. Jaspersoft could not reach these kind of numbers with crippled or poorly architected software.
Ajay- What are your plans for leveraging cloud computing, mobile and tablet platforms and for making Jaspersoft more easy and global to use.
Mike-The cloud represents two options for our customers. First, its a platform they deploy their applications to in order to lower infrastructure costs and be more nimble to growth. This allows them to focus on their core competency, which is building the best application for their end users. Jaspersoft’s BI platform is designed for the cloud because its multi-tenant enabled out of the box and has been so for nearly 3 years now. With nearly 100 SaaS or cloud based customers, we have a solid track record for supporting this environment.
Jaspersoft is also a completely web service based platform, from the front end UI to the back end, so that ISVs who chose specific services of our application to surface to their customers. Secondly, the cloud represents the next generation IDE for software developers. In a few years, developers will be building fewer and fewer apps locally. This will be done completely hosted on the cloud such as Amazon, CloudFoundry,Force.com, etc.. Jaspersoft is well positioned to be a part of this cloud IDE due to its open source license model, it’s modern flexible web based architecture, and ability to connect to just about any data source including Hadoop and other NoSQL engines commonly used in the cloud.
Mobile and tablet computing is a significant opportunity for Business Intelligence simply because the workforce no longer works at their desk from 9-5. The use cases for mobile BI are exploding, but its still early days in terms of production based adoption. Jaspersoft has had several customers build their own mobile applications, primarily due to the rich web service APIs available. As I write this, organizations are actively setting aside budget for mobile BI and are evaluating options, trying to make sense of the various architectures available from each BI vendor.
Jaspersoft will be announcing a new mobile BI offering shortly, helping to provide the broadest flexibility for customers so they can chose the right path for their needs. Its very early in mobile BI to know how much it will benefit customers, thus Jaspersoft will apply it’s strengths as a proven widely used open source tool that is flexible, intuitive, and cost effective to usher in this exciting new market.
Ajay- You announced the product partnership on the R Platform –RevoConnectR for JasperReports Server
How is that doing and what are the initial results? Any other initiatives on business analytics
Mike- We continue to see a steady stream of downloads and inquiries, roughly a hundred or more a month, of our RevoConnectR tool. The connector configures our JasperReports Server product to work seamlessly with the Revolution Analytics environment. As the predictive analytics and BI markets find tighter convergence for customers, we think our partnership with Revolution Analytics will provide the leading credible alternative for customers wanting this set of services without the costly price point of the leading proprietary vendors.
Mike Boyarski is Director of Product Marketing for Jaspersoft and has spent the majority of his 15 years in product management and marketing for enterprise software companies. Prior to Jaspersoft, Mike worked at Oracle helping drive the definition and adoption of Oracle’s application server and software appliances, along with Oracle’s On Demand service platform. Mike’s expertise is in database technologies, business intelligence, and data integration products.