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IBM expands data discovery and Q&A power of Watson Analytics
Posted on 15-Oct-2015 16:27. | Tags Filed under: News.

IBM has introduced new data discovery and question-and-answer capabilities for Watson Analytics that will make it even easier for users to extract insights from their data. IBM also announced widespread adoption, with half a million professionals registering for this data exploration and visualization service since its introduction less than a year ago.

The rapid ascent of Watson Analytics into one of the most popular self-service analytics platforms in the world has been fueled by its unique ability to put cognitive capabilities into the hands of business users, and enable a new era of unbiased analysis. IBM Watson Analytics helps individuals unlock the value of data they already have in their systems, as well as new valuable external data sources they may not even know they need. By bringing as much data as possible to the problem at hand, professionals can answer their toughest questions and embed insight and expertise into every decision they make.

Ventana Research recently recognized IBM Watson Analytics as the leader in Business Analytics with its Technology Innovation Award. The awards recognize technologies that have had, or have the potential to have, the most striking positive impact on business.

By understanding natural language, reasoning and generating hypotheses, cognitive computing is helping people understand, reason and learn from their data in new ways. Today, IBM is announcing expanded data discovery and question-and-answer capabilities for Watson Analytics to help professionals ask questions, uncover patterns and build predictions, including:
  • Access to New Data Connectors: Watson Analytics allows users to bring more external data sources to a business question, helping to ensure the right data is collected and curated to add context, depth and confidence to every decision. This includes access to data from IBM DB2, IBM Informix, IBM Netezza, IBM SQL Database, IBM dashDB and popular third party data sources.
  • A New Secure Connection to Corporate Data: The ability to securely connect to corporate data from the cloud is being enhanced with a new functionality from IBM’s cloud-based data refinement and access service, Dataworks. The new capability calls on Secure Gateway technology to establish a tunnel between the user’s on-premise databases and Watson Analytics, automatically encrypting data, and using Docker containers to transport it through a dedicated connection to allow for secure analysis. 
  • Interactive Data Discovery with Expert Storybooks: In collaboration with industry partners, IBM is introducing new data discovery models – called Expert Storybooks – that will help guide users on how to understand, learn and reason with different types of data sources to surface the most relevant facts and uncover patterns and relationships for predictive decision making.

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