SAS talks digital transformation and targets open source

 ·22 Oct 2019

Data and analytics specialist, SAS, says it will launch a new solution Open Model Manager in November 2019 to help companies put their data to work for smarter, faster business decisions.

The accelerated adoption of AI and machine learning, paired with the accessibility of open source software has data scientists churning out more analytical models than ever. However, there hasn’t been a corresponding increase in business value since few models make it out of the lab and into production, it said.

“Organisations have a good handle on building and training analytical models, including open source ones, but there is often a gap when it comes to operationalizing those models and pushing them into production, and a lot of the work done by data scientists is lost,” said Chandana Gopal, research director, business analytics at IDC.

“There is a need in the market for a new generation of model management solutions that allow data scientists to develop models in any language of their choice, and to properly catalog and deploy their analytical models. With this capability organisations can harness the value of their analytical assets and improve transparency through continuous monitoring.”

SAS said it is also enhancing its artificial intelligence (AI) solutions to help businesses improve efficiency and unlock value using automation.

SAS said that its updated platform delivers new functionality including automated data management, automated machine learning and interpretability features, as part of its commitment to make AI more transparent and accessible for all.

The enhancements provide an intelligent process to automate many of the manual and complex steps required for data transformations and to build machine learning models, the group said.

In 2018, SAS said it devoted 26% of its overall revenue into developing artificial intelligence (AI), IoT, data management and analytics software. The company has since committed to invest $1 billion in AI over the next three years.

And speaking to delegates at the SAS Analytics Experience 2019 event in Milan on Tuesday (22 October), Oliver Schabenberger, chief operating officer and chief technology officer at SAS, compared the digital evolution as an unfinished book, “we are just seeing the first few pages of each chapter”.

He said that while we may have learned to walk and talk, “we still have a lot of work to do”.

“Think of digital transformation as a way to do better things, not just the same things, better,” Schabenberger said.

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