Product News in Brief

News from SAP, SPSS, Recommind, and Plumtree

SAP Certifies Informatica for MySAP Business Suite

Informatica Corp. last week announced that SAP AG, a purveyor of enterprise application software, has certified its Informatica data integration platform to facilitate bi-directional data integration across SAP’s product line, including its mySAP Business Suite.

According to Informatica, customers can use its PowerCenter and PowerConnect data integration products to migrate datasets from legacy applications and ERP systems to the SAP Business Information Warehouse, which is a key component in SAP’s mySAP Business Intelligence solution.

SAP awarded interface certification to Informatica’s PowerCenter 6.1 and PowerConnect 6.1 products, which support bi-directional integration at the SAP R/3 application layer. Informatica says that both tools address the integration requirements of operational data store, data integration hub and data warehouse implementations in SAP environments.

SPSS Takes the Guesswork out of Marketing

SPSS Inc. released PredictiveMarketing, a predictive analytics tool that helps marketers improve customer targeting and increase customer response rates.

Predictive Marketing leverages analytic capabilities that reveal patterns as it sifts through volumes of customer data to find revealing patterns. In this respect, says SPSS, it’s able to anticipate which customers are likely to respond to a particular offer, what they are likely to purchase, and when they are likely to leave (“churn”).

PredictiveMarketing features templates that are designed to be quickly revisable for new campaigns and customer analyses. In addition, SSPS says that it extends traditional marketing approaches—such as recency, frequency and monetary analysis—by combining them with multi-dimensional customer behavior and demographic characteristics.

SPSS PredictiveMarketing is a stand-alone application that can integrate with third-party campaign management, sales force automation, or CRM systems from a variety of vendors. According to SPSS, the software can also be used in conjunction with data mining tools.

Automotive parts retailer The Pep Boys is using PredictiveMarketing to analyze its customers’ interests and purchasing behaviors in order to improve overall customers satisfaction rates.

New Tool Manages Unstructured Data

Recommind Inc. last week announced the availability of version 2.1 of MindServer, a tool for the retrieval and categorization of unstructured data.

Unstructured content is available in a variety of different formats, as e-mail messages, Web pages, USENET discussions, or document files of all kinds. Unlike structured data—which can easily be stored in a relational database management system—unstructured data management (UDM) typically requires more sophisticated collection and analytic capabilities.

MindServer 2.1 can identify concepts that describe a document, regardless of its language or content. Recommind says that customers are currently using the program to identify people, places, and organizations mentioned within text, and to analyze relationships between individuals and organizations.

To that end, MindServer 2.1 is powered by a new text extraction facility, which automates the task of identifying and highlighting—or extracting—entities such as personal names, organizations, places, dates, and phone numbers from unstructured data. Text extraction is particularly useful in identifying and analyzing information buried within text, and can also be used to enhance the accuracy of search results.MindServer 2.1 enables concept-based search and classification across unstructured or semi-structured information repositories. Recommind says it can drive the creation of new knowledge by disclosing relevant, related information that might otherwise remain undiscovered. Additional MindServer 2.1 enhancements include categorization tools that enable automated or interactive classification and taxonomy management, along with a GUI-based set of administrative tools.

Plumtree Releases Extranet Portal Package

Late last month, Plumtree Software announced the availability of a Plumtree Extranet Portal Package that bundles a variety of its product offerings along with professional services and training, along with maintenance and support.

The idea, Plumtree says, is to enable its customers—which include the Fannie Mae Foundation and Pratty & Whitney—to deploy collaborative extranet portals that provide additional services to customers, partners and other audiences.

To that end, Plumtree’s Extranet Portal Package comprises the Plumtree Corporate Portal with Plumtree Search; Plumtree Content Server; and Plumtree Collaboration Server, along with a framework for integrating charts and graphs from Microsoft Excel.

Customers that deploy Plumtree’s Extranet Portal Package can isolate their enterprise applications behind a firewall while at the same time exposing application resources through an extranet portal.

About the Author

Stephen Swoyer is a Nashville, TN-based freelance journalist who writes about technology.