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IBM Insight 2015: Analytics for everyone

Program Director, Marketing, IBM Analytics

“Consumerization” is one of those technology concepts that I think is proving to be a whole lot more than just the latest buzzword. The idea of making business systems as accessible and easy to use as personal smartphones and tablets has caught hold across all kinds of businesses and it’s changing the way technology at work actually functions. With IBM Insight 2015 coming up in October, I’ve been wondering how this idea applies to companies using data insights to move their business forward. Because for data insights to have a significant impact on business, analytics must be accessible not just to data analysts and technologists, but to the business users who ultimately benefit from those insights. 

That’s one reason you’ll be seeing a contingent of IBM designers at Insight 2015, including designers working on IBM Watson. That’s our cognitive computing platform that interprets massive amounts of data faster than any human can—but that also relies on humans to learn exactly how to interpret it. So one of the things IBM Watson designers are dedicated to doing is making it as easy as possible for people to interact with Watson—yes, as easy as using a smartphone. It’s all about user-centered design, which is at the heart of the IBM Design Thinking method that guides our designers. 

http://www.ibmbigdatahub.com/sites/default/files/analyticseveryone_embed.jpgFor example, the IBM Watson team recently launched a language translation service, and a huge part of the process of designing it was to connect with language translators at companies all over the world. The designers had to get inside their heads to learn how they work, how they think, how they experience technology—and what they need to do their jobs and to train their software to be cognitive. The result was a user experience that ensured non-analysts and non-technical people could use the technology effectively. One of the designers on the team calls it the kind of user experience that just “disappears”—meaning users are interacting with technology so intuitively they’re not even aware of how they’re interacting. 

That’s just one example of the ways in which the IBM Design Thinking and IBM Watson design teams are helping to shape simpler, more intuitive—more “consumerized,” if you will—user experiences. To learn more about it, register to join us at IBM Insight 2015

For more on the power of IBM Watson to deliver insights to technical and non-technical users, explore the possibilities at this IBM Analytics resource page.