Mark Cunningham joined Infostrux CEO, Goran Kimovski (Kima) for a live fireside chat. During the discussion, they covered a wide array of topics including the history of Business Intelligence, the Data Analytics industry, and technology trends that shaped and will continue to shape the industry.
Mark: I was actually involved in a project at Microsoft in the early days. We had a partnership with Microsoft, as people may remember, we bundled a lot of their products as OEMs. We built a funky tool that allowed you to access data from their mainframe reporting. So they would spit out mainframe reports and then we built a technology that allowed them to essentially mine those flat files. The tool would take that data and put it into the structured format, which then loaded it into their SQL server database. From there, we put Crystal on top of it to do all the analytics.
It was a stealth part of Crystal that we never actually released, but it was under the covers so if you knew how to get it, you could utilize it. We rolled it out of Microsoft globally and they used it because they had mainframes, this was back in the 90s. Believe it or not, they had massive mainframes still pumping out a lot of their reporting.
Obviously, it had a limited lifespan because the mainframe world was dying, but it was kind of a cool feature and it worked really well.