BI apps architecture concepts in 2020

  • moving from fixed cost model to dynamic, pay as you go approach
  • deconstruction of monolith BI solutions into micro-service model -> decoupling
  • infra as code
  • ongoing support for self — service BI and collaborative way of working in development process
Cloud platforms logos
Major cloud platforms

Moving from fixed cost to dynamic, pay as you go approach

This scenario comes into stage very often when companies are reaching life cycle end of current setup. Which probably means:

  • current servers are too old — lack of performance and you would need to buy a new ones
  • end of license contracts for current tools — Do I need to extend it?
  • current product (DWH) reach its limit and it is not possible (or very expensive) to update it in terms of new needs and requests which are coming from today’s world (semi-structured, unstructured or streaming data processing, dynamic scalability, etc.)
  • scalability — you are no longer tied to purchased server capacity
  • cost saving — paying only for running time
  • freedom — you are not tied to contracts running for years. -> Easier to change the platform, provider, tool, etc.

Monolith BI solution decoupling into micro-service model

Micro-service model is very popular in area of “standard” apps (web, mobile, enterprise internal apps, etc.). I can see same model has been coming also into BI area where this architecture approach brings more freedom in used tools, libraries or technologies in general where it is easier to replace one small block than change completely the architecture in case of monolith solution. Such approach brings benefits like:

  • development speed up — component based solution where it is easier to change or work on just one block without affecting rest of the solution
  • cost saving — not needed to buy one “big and expensive tool” who rule them all
  • wider options of available tools where for particular operation/task could be used specialized tool/library -> right tool for each task
  • security — better communication control between components
  • flexibility
Monolith versus decoupled solution

Infra as a code

IaC strongly support micro-service architecture model and allow development team doing the continuous deployments faster. When you manage your infrastructure as a code you have one place where to maintain it, you can see the infra changes over time (git) and anyone with proper knowledge has ability to modify it and it is also visible for everyone.
Next thing, it improves security because you are trying to mitigate risk of human errors in configurations. All of those aspects improve efficiency and reliability. When organizations start with new project, they should think about IaC integration into new product lifecycle, no matter what tool might be used for it (Terraform, CloudFormation, etc.).

  • consistency
  • speed
  • cost savings

Ongoing support for self — service BI and collaborative approach in development process

Self-service BI is something what has been “trendy” or “cool” for some time and it still preserves. Leveraging self-service BI helps organization to gain insights from data faster, it improves decisions made on top of them. Business users do not have to wait for IT guys or data scientist to build the reports for them, they can do it themselves. Software vendors have been trying to support this by new collaborative tools which are supposed to make it even easier.

Self-service BI

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Tomáš Sobotík

Tomáš Sobotík

Lead data engineer @Tietoevry. Currently obsessed by cloud technologies and solutions in relation to data & analytics. ☁️ ❄️