Blog, Semantic Intelligence

The Countless Names of Unstructured Information Management Technologies

I find interesting (and funny) to observe how the market of unstructured information management is evolving so fast that we don’t even share a name or expression to define it.

If we consider structured information, we all agree that we’re talking about databases, data warehouses, data mining and, recently, business intelligence; but we don’t have anything similar for unstructured data. In fact, depending on circumstances, applications and points of view, all the following names can be and are actually used:

·     search engine

·     information retrieval

·     information extraction

·     clustering

·     text mining

·     etl

·     content management

·     enterprise search technology

·     content access tools

·     semantic intelligence (we ourselves invented this one)

·     information access technology

·     categorization

·     text analytics


It’s also interesting to note that even IDC and Gartner don’t agree with each other on the name of the field: Gartner refers to “information access technology” while for IDC the right term is “content access tools”: luckily, they have “access” in common 🙂

Of course, I realize there are bigger problems in the world… but, I would like to see a clearer and more shared approach to names and expressions.  Considering how crucial the label “business intelligence” has been to establish a group of technologies and solutions that were already available on the market, I think that it is crucial to converge as soon as possible towards a common terminology.



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