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Big Data

The buzzword of the day is ‘analytics.’ But what does it mean?

Fortnightly Magazine - March 2012

and you have to change how you think about things. That doesn’t happen overnight.

Vishwakarma, Infosys: The CIM [common information model] for distribution is going to touch upon asset management, customer information systems, real-time systems, and all the silos. But utilities aren’t ready to implement those because some standards are under-developed, some are fully developed, and some are being developed. You need to correlate information across the systems.

Meyers, Telvent: We had better take our architecture and our interoperability standards seriously so that the system can grow and adapt as the requirements grow and adapt.


Fortnightly: Looking out five or 10 years into the future, where will utilities be with analytics?

Puckett, KEMA: Analytics will help the consumer enable his house to respond to the proper signaling provided by the utility.

Devereaux, Oracle: I know from experience that we were learning every month new things we could do with the data coming off of our millions of meters. We’re very bullish that this data is going to have a significant impact on the general forecasting functions that a utility does.

Meyers, Telvent: It’s the thing we’re thinking about now that will have the game finally changed five years from now.

Wambaugh, UISOL: We’ll get even more into what’s called complex event processing: real-time analytics where the data flows through these systems and the answers come out. I don’t think analytics will be an afterthought. It will be part of the process, part of everything you do.

Valocchi, IBM: We’re going to see a much more consumer-friendly utility in the future.

Jackman, Oracle: Once they raise their head above the parapet, after they’ve rolled out their meters and have actually started collecting more than a sample size of interval data, utilities will innovate—the same way as when you call up your bank and your bank knows exactly who you are, and what offers they can give you.

Hunn, Onzo: At heart, utilities like doing what they do today, which is supplying electricity and gas. And though I think we may see some pushing out into doing demand response and trying to sell other services, we will probably see more innovative services coming up, working alongside utilities.

Bhambhri, IBM: This is a pretty exciting time for this industry to really embrace the technology. The technology is there. They have the data. Now they have to take the next step.