Apr
24
2018
--

Etleap scores $1.5 million seed to transform how we ingest data

Etleap is a play on words for a common set of data practices: extract, transform and load. The startup is trying to place these activities in a modern context, automating what they can and in general speeding up what has been a tedious and highly technical practice. Today, they announced a $1.5 million seed round.

Investors include First Round Capital, SV Angel, Liquid2, BoxGroup and other unnamed investors. The startup launched five years ago as a Y Combinator company. It spent a good 2.5 years building out the product, says CEO and founder Christian Romming. They haven’t required additional funding until now because they have been working with actual customers. Those include Okta, PagerDuty and Mode, among others.

Romming started out at adtech startup VigLink and while there he encountered a problem that was hard to solve. “Our analysts and scientists were frustrated. Integration of the data sources wasn’t always a priority and when something broke, they couldn’t get it fixed until a developer looked at it.” That lack of control slowed things down and made it hard to keep the data warehouse up-to-date.

He saw an opportunity in solving that problem and started Etleap . While there were (and continue to be) legacy solutions like Informatica, Talend and Microsoft SQL Server Integration Services, he said when he studied these at a deeply technical level, he found they required a great deal of help to implement. He wanted to simplify ETL as much as possible, putting data integration into the hands of much less technical end users, rather than relying on IT and consultants.

One of the problems with traditional ETL is that the data analysts who make use of the data tend to get involved very late after the tools have already been chosen, and Romming says his company wants to change that. “They get to consume whatever IT has created for them. You end up with a bread line where analysts are at the mercy of IT to get their jobs done. That’s one of the things we are trying to solve. We don’t think there should be any engineering at all to set up an ETL pipeline,” he said.

Etleap is delivered as managed SaaS or you can run it within your company’s AWS accounts. Regardless of the method, it handles all of the managing, monitoring and operations for the customer.

Romming emphasizes that the product is really built for cloud data warehouses. For now, they are concentrating on the AWS ecosystem, but have plans to expand beyond that down the road. “We want to help more enterprise companies make better use of their data, while modernizing data warehousing infrastructure and making use of cloud data warehouses,” he explained.

The company currently has 15 employees, but Romming plans to at least double that in the next 12-18 months, mostly increasing the engineering team to help further build out the product and create more connectors.

Apr
24
2018
--

Catalyst brothers find capital success with $2.4M from True

Over the past few years, the old language of “customer support” has been supplanted by the new language of “customer success.” In the old model, companies would essentially disappear following the conclusion of a sale, merely handling customer problems when they arose. Now, companies are actively reaching out to customers, engaging them with education and training and monitoring them with analytics to ensure they have the best time with the product as possible.

What’s changing is the nature of product and services today: subscription. Customers no longer just make a single buying decision about a product, but instead must actively commit to using the product, or else they churn.

New York-based Catalyst, founded by brothers Edward and Kevin Chiu, wants to rebuild customer success from the ground up with an integrated software platform. They have received some capital success of their own, securing $2.4 million in venture capital from Phil Black of True Ventures with participation from Ludlow Ventures and Compound.

New York has had something of an increase in founder mafias, as TechCrunch reported this weekend. Catalyst is no exception to this trend, with the Chiu brothers both working at DigitalOcean, one of New York’s many high-flying enterprise startups. Edward Chiu was director of customer success at the company for a number of years, but had a unique background in sales and also in coding before starting.

Kevin Chiu was head of inside sales at DigitalOcean . “I brought my brother on to do sales at DigitalOcean,” Edward Chiu explains. “We always knew that we wanted to start a company together, but wanted to see if we would kill each other.” The two worked together, and lo and behold, they didn’t kill each other.

Edward Chiu wanted to match the product experience of using DigitalOcean with the experience of using its internal customer success tools. Nothing on the market fit. “Given that DigitalOcean was a very technical product,” Chiu explained, “we decided to build our own tool.” Chiu thought of customer success at DigitalOcean as its own product, and his team built up the platform to improve its functionality and scalability. “We just used the tool and we loved it,” he said, so we “started to show this tool to a bunch of other customer success leaders I am connected with.”

Other customer success leaders said they wanted the platform, and “after the 20th person told me that,” he and his brother spun out of DigitalOcean to go on their own. Unlike enterprise startups in New York a couple of years ago that often struggled to find any investors, Catalyst found cash quickly. “Two weeks in we had more offers than we knew what to do with,” Chiu explained. The two said they had originally targeted a fundraise of $750,000, but ended up at $2.4 million.

Catalyst is a platform that integrates between a number of other major SaaS services such as Salesforce, Zendesk, Mixpanel and others to create a unified dashboard for data around customer success. From there, customer success managers have a set of automated tools to handle engagement, such as customer segmentation and email campaigns.

A major challenge in the customer success world is that these managers often don’t have the skills required to do advanced data analytics, so they often rely on their friends in engineering to run scripts or perform database lookups. The hope is that Catalyst’s feature set is powerful enough that these sorts of ad hoc tasks become a thing of the past. “Because we aggregate all this data, you can run queries,” Chiu explains.

Chiu says that Catalyst doesn’t just want to be a software platform, but rather a movement that pushes every company to think about how they can make their customers successful. “There are so many companies that are starting to understand that it is not something that you do once you raise a Series A, but something you do from day one,” Chiu said. “If you take care of your very first customer, they will constantly promote you and constantly promote your business.”

The company is based in Flatiron, and has eight employees.

Apr
23
2018
--

Tableau gets new pricing plans and a data preparation tool

Data analytics platform Tableau today announced the launch of both a new data preparation product and a new subscription pricing plan.

Currently, Tableau offers desktop plans for users who want to analyze their data locally, a server plan for businesses that want to deploy the service on-premises or on a cloud platform, and a fully hosted online plan. Prices for these range from $35 to $70 per user and month. The new pricing plans don’t focus so much on where the data is analyzed but on the analyst’s role. The new Creator, Explorer and Viewer plans are tailored toward the different user experiences. They all include access to the new Tableau Prep data preparation tool, Tableau Desktop and new web authoring capabilities — and they are available both on premises or in the cloud.

Existing users can switch their server or desktop subscriptions to the new release today and then assign each user either a creator, explorer or viewer role. As the name indicates, the new viewer role is meant for users who mostly consume dashboards and visualizations, but don’t create their own. The explorer role is for those who need access to a pre-defined data set and the creator role is for analysts and power user who need access to all of Tableau’s capabilities.

“Organizations are facing the urgent need to empower their entire workforce to help drive more revenue, reduce costs, provide better service, increase productivity, discover the next scientific breakthrough and even save lives,” said Adam Selipsky, CEO at Tableau, in today’s announcement. “Our new offerings will help entire organizations make analytics ubiquitous, enabling them to tailor the capabilities required for every employee.”

As for the new data preparation tool, the general idea here is to give users a visual way to shape and clean their data, something that’s especially important as businesses now often pull in data from a variety of sources. Tableau Prep can automate some of this, but the most important aspect of the service is that it gives users a visual interface for creating these kind of workflows. Prep includes support for all the standard Tableau data connectors and lets users perform calculations, too.

“Our customers often tell us that they love working with Tableau, but struggle when data is in the wrong shape for analysis,” said Francois Ajenstat, Chief Product Officer at Tableau. “We believe data prep and data analysis are two sides of the same coin that should be deeply integrated and look forward to bringing fun, easy data prep to everyone regardless of technical skill set.”

Apr
23
2018
--

Talking Drupal #168 – Open Source Sustainability

In episode 168 we talk with Webform Module maintainer, Jake Rockowitz, about open source sustainability.  www.TalkingDrupa.com/168

Agenda

  • What is open source sustainability
  • The path – YML and Webform Module Sustainability
  • Different approaches to monetize
  • Sponsor a feature
  • Open source clauses for contracts
  • SaaS
  • WordPress module approach
  • Mentoring approach
  • Drupal Association
  • Messaging

Resources

Jasob Rockowitz website

Yes, the contribute module is making a statement

My three mistakes in regards to the Contribute module

A handy guide to financial support for open source

Request For Commits

Why Paid Drupal Modules Fail: Drupal as Art

Open Collective 

Hosts

Stephen Cross – www.ParallaxInfoTech.com @stephencross

John Picozzi – www.oomphinc.com @johnpicozzi

Nic Laflin – www.nLighteneddevelopment.com @nicxvan

Jacob Rockwitz – https://www.jrockowitz.com @jrockowitz

 

Apr
23
2018
--

Percona Live 2018 Featured Talk: Data Integrity at Scale with Alexis Guajardo

Alexis Google Percona Live 2018

Percona Live 2018 Featured TalkWelcome to another interview blog for the rapidly-approaching Percona Live 2018. Each post in this series highlights a Percona Live 2018 featured talk at the conference and gives a short preview of what attendees can expect to learn from the presenter.

This blog post highlights Alexis Guajardo, Senior Software Engineer at Google.com. His session talk is titled Data Integrity at Scale. Keeping data safe is the top responsibility of anyone running a database. In this session, he dives into Cloud SQL’s storage architecture to demonstrate how they check data down to the disk level:

Percona: Who are you, and how did you get into databases? What was your path to your current responsibilities?

Alexis: I am a Software Engineer on the Cloud SQL team with Google Cloud. I got into databases by using FileMaker. However, the world of database technology has changed many times over since then.

Percona: Your session is titled “Data Integrity at Scale”. Has the importance of data integrity increased over time? Why?

Alexis Google Percona Live 2018Alexis: Data integrity has always been vital to databases and data in general. The most common method is using checksum validation to ensure data integrity. The challenge that we faced at Cloud SQL on Google Cloud was how to do this for two very popular open source database solutions, and how to do it at scale. The store for MySQL was a bit more straightforward, because of innochecksum.  PostgreSQL required our team to create a utility, which is open sourced. The complicated aspect of data corruption is that sometimes it is dormant and discovered at a most inopportune time. What we have instituted are frequent checks for corruption of the entire data set, so if there is a software bug or other issue, we can mitigate it as soon as possible.

Percona: How does scaling affect the ability to maintain data integrity?

AlexisThere is a benefit to working on a team that provides a public cloud. Since Google Cloud is not bounded by most restrictions that an individual or company would be, we can allocate resources to do data integrity verifications without restriction. If I were to implement a similar system at a smaller company, most likely there would be cost and resource restrictions. However, data integrity is a feature that Google Cloud provides.

Percona: What are three things a DBA should know about ensuring data integrity?

Alexis: I think that the three things can be simplified down to three words: verify your backups.

Even if someone does not use Cloud SQL, it is vital to take backups, maintain them and verify them. Having terabytes of backups, but without verification, leaves open the possibility that a software bug or hardware issue somehow corrupted a backup.

Percona: Why should people attend your talk? What do you hope people will take away from it? 

Alexis: I would say the main reason to attend my talk is to discover more about Cloud SQL. As a DBA or developer, having a managed database as a service solution takes away a lot of the minutia. But there are still the tasks of improving queries and creating applications.  However, having reliable and verified backups is vital. With the addition of high availability and the ability to scale up easily, Cloud SQL’s managed database solution makes life much easier.

Percona: What are you looking forward to at Percona Live (besides your talk)?

Alexis: The many talks about Vitesse look very interesting. It is also an open source Google technology, and to see its adoption by many companies and how they have benefited from its use will be interesting.

Want to find out more about this Percona Live 2018 featured talk, and data integrity at scale? Register for Percona Live 2018, and see Alexis session talk Data Integrity at Scale. Register now to get the best price! Use the discount code SeeMeSpeakPL18 for 10% off.

Percona Live Open Source Database Conference 2018 is the premier open source event for the data performance ecosystem. It is the place to be for the open source community. Attendees include DBAs, sysadmins, developers, architects, CTOs, CEOs, and vendors from around the world.

The Percona Live Open Source Database Conference will be April 23-25, 2018 at the Hyatt Regency Santa Clara & The Santa Clara Convention Center.

The post Percona Live 2018 Featured Talk: Data Integrity at Scale with Alexis Guajardo appeared first on Percona Database Performance Blog.

Apr
23
2018
--

Check Out the Percona Live 2018 Live Stream!

Percona Live 2018 Live Stream

Announcing the Percona Live 2018 live stream.

This year at Percona Live Open Source Database Conference 2018 we are live streaming the Keynote Talks on Day 1 and 2.

Percona is streaming the keynotes on Tuesday, April 24, 2018, and Wednesday, April 25, 2018 beginning at 9 AM PDT (both days). The keynote speakers include people from VividCortex, Upwork, Oracle, Netflix and many more. The keynote panels feature a cloud discussion and a cool technologies showcase.

Use the live stream link if you don’t want to miss a keynote, but can’t be at the main stage. The link for the live stream is:

The list of keynote talks and speakers for each day is:

Day 1

Day 2

The post Check Out the Percona Live 2018 Live Stream! appeared first on Percona Database Performance Blog.

Apr
23
2018
--

This Week In Data with Colin Charles 36: Percona Live 2018

Colin Charles

Colin CharlesPercona Live Santa Clara 2018! Last week’s column may have somehow not made it to Planet MySQL, so please don’t miss the good links at: This Week in Data with Colin Charles 35: Percona Live 18 final countdown and a roundup of recent news.

Back to Percona Live – I expect people are still going to be registering, right down to the wire! I highly recommend you also register for the community dinner. They routinely sell out and people tend to complain about not being able to join in the fun, so reserve your spot early. Please also be present on Monday, which is not just tutorial day, but also during the welcoming reception, there will be the most excellent community awards. In addition, if you don’t find a tutorial as something you’re interested in (or didn’t get a ticket that included tutorials!), why not check out the China Track, something new and unique that showcases the technology coming out of China.

The biggest news this week? On Thursday, April 19, 2018, MySQL 8.0 became Generally Available with the 8.0.11 release. The release notes are a must read, as is the upgrade guide (this time around, you really want to read it!). Some more digestible links: What’s New in MySQL 8.0? (Generally Available), MySQL 8.0: New Features in Replication, MySQL 8.0 – Announcing GA of the MySQL Document Store. As a bonus, the Hacker News thread is also well worth a read. Don’t forget that all the connectors also got a nice version bump.

The PostgreSQL website has been redesigned – check out PostgreSQL.org.

More open source databases are always a good thing, and it’s great to see Apple open sourcing FoundationDB. Being corporate-backed open source, I have great hopes for what the project can become. The requisite Hacker News thread is also well worth a read.

Releases

  • PostgreSQL 10.3, 9.6.8, 9.5.12, 9.4.17, AND 9.3.22 released
  • MariaDB 10.3.6 is another release candidate, more changes for sql_mode=oracle, changes to the INFORMATION_SCHEMA tables around system versioning, and more. Particularly interesting is the contributor list, listing a total of 34 contributors. Five come from the MariaDB Foundation (including Monty) which is 14%, 17 come from the MariaDB Corporation (including Monty again) which is 50%, two from Tempesta, one from IBM, six from Codership (over 17%!), and four are independent. So nearly 62% of contributions are run by the Corporation/Foundation in total.
  • SysbenchRocks, a repository of Sysbench benchmarks, libraries and extensions.

Link List

Upcoming appearances

Feedback

I look forward to feedback/tips via e-mail at colin.charles@percona.com or on Twitter @bytebot.

The post This Week In Data with Colin Charles 36: Percona Live 2018 appeared first on Percona Database Performance Blog.

Apr
23
2018
--

Heptio launches an open-source load balancer for Kubernetes and OpenStack

Heptio is one of the more interesting companies in the container ecosystem. In part, that’s due to the simple fact that it was founded by Craig McLuckie and Joe Beda, two of the three engineers behind the original Kubernetes project, but also because of the technology it’s developing and the large amount of funding it has raised to date.

As the company announced today, it saw its revenue grow 140 percent from the last quarter of 2017 to the first quarter of 2018. In addition, Heptio says its headcount quadrupled since the beginning of 2017. Without any actual numbers, that kind of data doesn’t mean all that much. It’s easy to achieve high-growth numbers if you’re starting out from zero, after all. But it looks like things are going well at the company and that the team is finding its place in the fast-growing Kubernetes ecosystem.

In addition to announcing these numbers, the team also today launched a new open-source project that will join the company’s existing stable of tools, like the cluster-recovery tool Ark and the Kubernetes cluster-monitoring tool Sonobuoy.

This new tool, Heptio Gimbal, has a very specific use case that is probably only of interest to a relatively small number of users — but for them, it’ll be a lifeline. Gimbal, which Heptio developed together with Yahoo Japan subsidiary Actapio, helps enterprises route traffic into both Kubernetes clusters and OpenStack deployments. Many enterprises now run these technologies in parallel, and while some are now moving beyond OpenStack and toward a more Kubernetes -centric architecture, they aren’t likely to do away with their OpenStack investments anytime soon.

“We approached Heptio to help us modernize our infrastructure with Kubernetes without ripping out legacy investments in OpenStack and other back-end systems,” said Norifumi Matsuya, CEO and president at Actapio. “Application delivery at scale is key to our business. We needed faster service discovery and canary deployment capability that provides instant rollback and performance measurement. Gimbal enables our developers to address these challenges, which at the macro-level helps them increase their productivity and optimize system performance.”

Gimbal uses many of Heptio’s existing open-source tools, as well as the Envoy proxy, which is part of the Cloud Native Computing Foundation’s stable of cloud-native projects. For now, Gimbal only supports one specific OpenStack release (the “Mitaka” release from 2016), but the team is looking at adding support for VMware and EC2 in the future.

Apr
23
2018
--

DoD clarifies winner-take-all cloud contract

When the Department of Defense announced in March a 10-year winner-take-all cloud contract that could be worth up to $10 billion, it raised a few eyebrows. Last week, they clarified some of the conditions, and it turns out that much like a modern baseball free agent contract, there are a couple of points where the DoD can opt out of the deal.

In a press conference last week, chief Pentagon spokesperson Dana W. White indicated that the original contract award is for just two years. After that there are two additional options for five years and three years. The department can opt out after the first two years if it’s not working out, or seven years if it accepts the second option. Obviously if it takes the final option, that would add up to a full 10-year commitment.

Leigh Madden, who heads up Microsoft’s defense effort, says he believes Microsoft can win such a contract, but it isn’t necessarily the best approach for the DoD. “If the DoD goes with a single award path, we are in it to win, but having said that, it’s counter to what we are seeing across the globe where 80 percent of customers are adopting a multi-cloud solution,” Madden told TechCrunch.

White indicated that 46 companies have responded to the request for proposal, but it seems clear there are only a handful of companies that could handle a project of this scope. For starters, we have Amazon and Microsoft, along with Google, IBM and Oracle.

That said, White indicated that companies can band together and form a partnership, which means you could see some extremely strange bedfellows trying to form the equivalent of a rock supergroup with multiple players coming together to win the deal.

This development certainly opens up some interesting options for the vendors involved and creates a level of competition and alliances the likes of which the tech industry might have never seen. Whoever gets the contract, they get two years to prove they can do this, then they will be evaluated before getting a shot at the second five-year window.

Apr
22
2018
--

Slite raises $4.4M to create a smarter internal notes tool

Slack exposed the demand for a dead-simple internal communications tool, which has inspired a wave of startups trying to pick apart the rest of a company’s daily activities — including Slite, which hopes to take on internal notes with a fresh round of new capital.

Slite is more or less an attempt at a replacement for a Google Doc or something in Dropbox Paper that is sprawling and getting a little out of control. An employee might create a Slite note like an onboarding manual or an internal contact list, and the hope is to replace the outdated internal wiki and offer employees a hub where they can either go and start stringing together important information, or find it right away. The company today said it has raised $4.4 million in a new seed funding round led by Index Ventures after coming out of Y Combinator’s 2018 winter class. Ari Helgason is joining Slite’s board of directors as part of the deal.

“We now have to develop this product enough to show we can actually replace large amounts of things,” co-founder Christophe Pasquier said. “Today we have more than 300 active teams, and we have to show that we can make it scale. In the short term is just we’re replacing Google Docs because these tools ahven’t evolved and we’re bringing something super fresh. The longer-term vision of really bringing all the information that has value from a team and becoming this single source of truth for teams.”

Slite tracks permissions and changes to the notes in order to allow companies to do a better job of maintaining them, rather than sharing around links and having different people jump in and make changes. The part about sharing links is one in particular that stung for Pasquier, as even larger companies can have issues with employees asking in Slack what policies are — or even for links to parts of the internal wiki where that important information is buried.

Getting there certainly won’t be easy. Companies like Dropbox continuing to invest in these kinds of collaborative note-taking tools — that could easily evolve into internal hubs of information. And as Pasquier tries to liken the development arc to Slack, which showed employees wanted some more seamless tool for communication, that company is also working on making its search tools smarter, like helping employees find the right person to ask a question. It doesn’t look like an asynchronous notes tool just yet, but if all the information is somewhere in Slack already, a smart search tool may be the only thing necessary to find all that information.

Powered by WordPress | Theme: Aeros 2.0 by TheBuckmaker.com