by Robin Bloor
There has always been a pressing need for BI. Even back in the day when all it delivered was reams of reports and a pie chart or two; people called it Decision Support. It was sensible from the get go. Business processes that required the human touch also required the delivery of relevant data to the humans doing the touching.
Like everything else in IT, BI has evolved since then. It has progressed from its graphical origins, through OLAP and portals to dashboards and visualizations. It accelerated from being days out of date, to hours out of date to near real-time. And it changed from being prescriptive to interactive.
At the moment, it is heading in the direction of offering improved business process integration, and Looker is one of the players pushing it in that direction.