Best use of cloud: ActiveViam

Best use of cloud: ActiveViam
Risk Markets Technology Awards 2024 Winner

Data analytics provider ActiveViam takes the 2024 Best use of cloud award, thanks to the addition of a new set of features, DirectQuery, to its Atoti platform. With a focus on the financial services space, the Atoti platform has long been recognised for its capabilities in complex last-mile analytics and real-time online analytical processing capabilities. 

Launched in November 2022, DirectQuery is an optional add-on module to Atoti that allows users to directly query external databases. It was created following customer feedback to support larger datasets without the need to fully load data into memory, addressing cost considerations. Like many other systems for advanced last-mile analytics, Atoti originally required users to move data into the system for analysis. This was considered by many customers to be an additional risk and cost, especially for those that had already invested in data warehouses. 

Judges said:

  • “An excellent use of cloud – effectively expanding the extent of queryable data for users.”
  • “Good addition to cloud data management.”
  • “Great coverage.”

Thanks to DirectQuery, Atoti can deploy plug-and-play atop a data warehouse and target cloud-scale datasets that would not fit entirely in-memory. DirectQuery does not ingest data and, technically, is a mechanism of query delegation. However, ActiveViam kept the ability to load granular or aggregate data in-memory within Atoti’s own data stores to offer a hybrid approach to business analysis needs.

Using DirectQuery, customers can leverage the scalability of storage and compute resources that the underlying external database offers, while preserving Atoti’s capabilities for complex and fast last-mile analytics. As of September 2023, DirectQuery supported several external databases, including Amazon Redshift, ClickHouse, Databricks, Google BigQuery, Microsoft Azure Synapse, Microsoft SQL Server and Snowflake.

The benefit of this approach is that business users can analyse historical datasets and operational data using a single framework to define the analytics and a similar user interface to explore the data. Business users can also make the case for caching hot data in-memory. 

This enables them to combine real-time datasets with cloud-scale datasets that do not fit in-memory to receive a complete picture within the same environment.

Alongside the benefits DirectQuery delivers to end-business users, it also has advantages for IT users. For instance, IT managers can precisely optimise which parts of the dataset to load in-memory and which parts to leave on a persistent, on-cloud or on-premises database. Hot data regularly queried by many users can be loaded in-memory for instant, fast access, while cold data, which is accessed less often, can remain where it is for cost-effective storage.

DirectQuery also means projects can launch faster because everything runs on a plug-and-play basis. Because data does not need to be moved, cubes start in minutes – or even seconds – which opens new possibilities for deploying analytics on-demand and dynamic provisioning.

Xavier Bellouard, chief strategy officer and co-founder of ActiveViam, says:

Xavier Bellouard, ActiveViam

“In embracing innovation and listening to our clients’ needs, ActiveViam is honoured to receive the Best use of cloud award. Our commitment to empowering businesses with cutting-edge solutions led to the development of DirectQuery for our Atoti platform. This advancement not only expands the horizons of queryable data but also revolutionises cloud data management. We’re thrilled to continue providing unparalleled capabilities for complex analytics while optimising scalability and resource utilisation. This recognition reaffirms our dedication to driving transformative value in the realm of data analytics.”

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