Trends to Watch in The Cannabis Industry and Medical Cannabis Production

Cannabis Manufacturing

Growing cannabis as wells as production of cannabis extracts in industries is against the law in many countries. For that reason, many face prosecution if they engage in any of these activities. On the other hand, anyone trafficking marijuana within regions that do not allow it is liable to a jail term according to the laws of the land.

However, there is a shift from prohibition of production and growth of cannabis. As from the previous year, adults in four new states can now use marijuana for recreational purposes. Legal pot sales in North America hit almost $7 billion in the year 2016, and four other states legalized medical marijuana. Here are cannabis industry trends to watch this year.

Medical vs. Recreational

In the year 2017, the expectation is that U.S. medical and recreational markets will take a different direction, particularly in marketing and branding. In that case, you should expect recreational adult use of marijuana to assume the status of big alcohol while medical cannabis will take on a biotech posture to incline more on pharmaceutical.

Brand Emergence

The appetite to finance marijuana brands by investors will increase. As a result, the market for cannabis will grow faster. On the other hand, emergence of national brand leaders is likely as investors and growth of the industry set in the market. Looking back into the year 2016, we can see consolidation and brand emergence at a smaller scale. But this year, this will happen on a larger scale.

Consequently, it will avail both product and retail establishments in every market where cannabis is legal.

International Markets

Another trend to expect is the growth of the legal pot sector beyond the U.S. market. That is evident after an announcement by Germany’s health minister in the year 2016. As per the announcement, plans to legalize medical marijuana at the federal level this year are underway. In Canada, use of medical cannabis at the federal level is already in effect. Plans to legalize adult recreational use of marijuana in Canada in 2017 are also in the pipeline.

It is important to note that demand for cannabis in the U.S. is not as high as it is in Canada. That is clearly visible in the country’s public markets that exude serious investment in the marijuana market.

Industry Consolidation

Cannabis is illegal at the federal level, which attracts both legal and financial risks. For that reason, most state-legal pot businesses operate in small-scale. This venture proves a successful venture to some extent. However, the entry of serious investors in this sector will increase competition. As a result, small marijuana traders will merge with larger establishments.

Merging will cushion them from heavy losses and spur growth within the industry. Huge institutions are only awaiting federal approval to move into marijuana business full throttle.

Ancillary Business Boom

Cannabis relates to many other industries that do not interact with the plant directly. Hence, as the market share of this product increases, you should expect a surge in demand for ancillary. It is worth noting that the boom of ancillary business may overtake that of cannabis. Many are considering a venture into marijuana business, but do not have the capital investment which compliance demands.

Such individuals or entities now have opportunity to tap into the gains of the industry through ancillary. That is because many products and services relate to commercialization of cannabis.

Marijuana Banking

The growth of marijuana businesses in the year 2015 and 2016 is not doing much to give such enterprises access to traditional banking and financial services. As such, operations in the sector remain on a cash basis for those already in this line of business. That is not the best way of running such a business today. On the contrary, high-profile lawmakers are now pushing for a reform of federal banking guidelines to accommodate those in the marijuana sector.

There is a high probability that cannabis financial services will open up this year. Contact us now for more information.


Reordering lines on an Acumatica sales order

A popular requested enhancement to sales orders has just been added to the Acumatica release number 6.10.0472.  This lets you reorder document lines by using any of the following ways:

  • You can drag-and-drop lines to reorder document lines within one page.
  • You can cut a line on one page by usingCut Rowin the context menu and paste the line on another page by using Insert Cut Row in the context menu.

See below for an example.

 

Acumatica Sales Order Line Reorder- MaxQ

A very useful feature that you may have missed in the release notes.


Cloud Backup Is Your Best Protection from Ransomware

Ransomware has become the biggest malware threat on the Internet. It gives you a choice between losing critical files and paying the crook who wrecked them. Victims have handed over as much as $17,000 to get their files back, and there’s no guarantee you’ll get them restored even if you pay. The surest defense is an up-to-date cloud backup with a safe copy of all your files.

What is ransomware?

 

Ransomware usually starts with a phishing email message. If you open the attachment, it runs a script that downloads and launches the actual ransomware. It runs quietly in the background, replacing files with encrypted versions. When it’s done, it puts up a message on your screen telling you what’s happened. The files are now all in a form which is useless to you, because you don’t have the key and the crook does. If you want to see your files again, you have to send a payment, usually an anonymous Bitcoin transfer. After that, you might get the information that will decrypt your files.

To force you into a hasty decision, the message may threaten to encrypt more files if you don’t send a prompt payment. That’s not an empty threat.

Your situation as a ransomware victim isn’t as hopeless as the extortionist would like you to think. There are ways to recover files from many kinds of ransomware. But you’re best off if you have a safe copy of all your files. Then you just have to remove the malicious code and restore the files.

Unfortunately, a local backup drive doesn’t help much. The malware will look for any attached drives and corrupt the files on them as well. You need a backup which isn’t part of the computer’s file system and is safe from unauthorized access. Cloud backup is an easy way to accomplish that.

How cloud backup protects you

 

Only the backup software can reach files copied to a cloud service. Malware on your computer can’t touch them. MaxQ backup software encrypts files in transit, so no one can intercept or alter them. It encrypts them on its servers, so they’re always safe.

The more frequent your backups are, the safer your files are. If they’re updated every hour, then you stand to lose only an hour’s work. That’s a lot better than losing everything.

Versioning increases your safety. If your backup keeps running after ransomware has damaged files, it will back up the damaged versions. A versioned backup system keeps older editions of the files as well, so you can restore the last good version.

 

Cloud backup is different from a cloud drive. If your files on a cloud service are mapped to your computer as a virtual disk drive, they’re subject to attacks. (Any good cloud service will back up its own files, though.) Files in a cloud backup system aren’t vulnerable that way.

 

If you’re hit by ransomware

When you get a ransomware notice, the first thing to do is shut down the computer. That will keep it safe from further damage. Have an expert in malware removal work on it to make sure there won’t be a recurrence. Upgrade the security software so that the computer won’t be re-infected.

After you’ve done that, it’s safe to restore your files. Be careful not to restore any infected system software. The process will take a while if a lot of files were damaged.

The encrypted files are harmless in themselves, so it isn’t necessary to aggressively remove all of them. You don’t want to accidentally delete good files created since the last backup. Erring toward leaving some encrypted files around is safer.

Having your files regularly backed up provides double satisfaction. You know that they’re safe from ransomware, accidental corruption or deletion, and physical failure. You also know that crooks aren’t going to collect your money as a reward for wrecking your data.

MaxQ Cloud Backup is just one of the ways we help keep your data safe and manageable. Contact us to learn more.

 


4 Ways the Cloud Improves Supply Chain Planning

Supply chain planning used to be more of a guessing game, relying on intuitive managers that, basically, had the inventory and sales data in their heads or on spreadsheets. Advancing technologies have been changing how business processes are: managed, planned, and accomplished – shifting thinking patterns from managing inventory and sales to managing functions and tools within ERP systems. 2017 seems to be the year when a balance will emerge more distinctly; let’s discuss this more by examining 4 ways the cloud improves supply chain planning.

#1. Automation:

Manufacturers and distributors have many working parts to manage within their enterprise systems, including supply chain planning. The real-time functionality of cloud based software brings continuous adjustments, and specified filters determine automated functions to streamline purchasing and order management.

Automatic updates to SaaS, IaaS, PaaS systems also help managers and IT departments focus on strategy, rather than managing systems and tools. Effective supply chain planning depends on real-time numbers from a continuously updated system, including: historical business intelligence, special projects, discounts, engineered to order products, vendor costs, and more.

#2. Enhanced Integration:

Cloud based subscription software is easier to integrate into enterprise systems and gives more functionality with add-ons. This enhanced integration brings more flexibility to businesses with supply chain planning. For instance, if there’s a need for an order management add-on or a custom software solution for a project.

There’s no one size fits all solution for manufacturers and distributors; each business has unique supply chain planning needs according to their: clients, products, systems, and compliance/regulation requirements. Enhanced integration capabilities with cloud based software helps businesses adopt necessary tools and functions with more agility.

#3. Predictive Business Intelligence:

Again, the cloud provides real-time automation, enhancing a business’s ability to predict supply chain patterns and needs. Human intelligence augmented with predictive business intelligence, brings the best of both worlds for supply chain planning.

Planning and strategy have always needed business intelligence from data analysis. User defined formulas combining: past history, present demand, material specifics, and customized options – give managers actionable insights into: inventory, sales, times, costs, and needs, with real-time availability and updates. This streamlines supply chain planning with more precise predictions.

#4. Enhanced Collaboration:

Supply chain planning is a team effort for nearly all manufacturers and distributors, involving: sales teams, warehouse teams, executives, vendors, clients, accounting departments, etc. Cloud based software enhances collaboration between team members anytime, anywhere, and with any digital device. This expands remote capabilities, creates continuous planning development, and gives more tools for collaboration methods.

Modern businesses are using mobile devices to their advantage, at home and at the work place. Remote accessibility is a distinct advantage businesses have when using cloud based software solutions, creating efficiency and flexibility in the supply chain planning process, which is often time sensitive.

Using the expanded capabilities of the Microsoft Dynamics platform, including CRM software, businesses will have multiple methods of collaborating during the supply chain planning process. Cloud capabilities will enhance these tools with remote and real-time functionality, enhancing collaboration methods and planning effectiveness.

Summary

Cloud based subscription software is simplifying business processes and adding functionality with centralized integration. For businesses and organizations with many moving parts and large fluctuating inventories to manage, this is streamlining day-to-day tasks, including supply chain planning.

 

Through automation, integration, BI, and mobile computing, managers now have optimal organizational tools with cloud based software solutions.

Max Q Technologies has certified expertise with Microsoft Dynamics and Acumatics products and can help manufacturers and distributors to: choose, implement, and manage the right software solutions for their unique business’s needs.

We also develop custom software solutions with top developers and industry expertise across all fields. We’re offering to be a comprehensive technology partner with nearly 30 years experience, for businesses that want to take advantage of cloud software for supply chain planning and more. If interested in learning more please contact us today.

 

 


Microsoft Power BI, offering small businesses the opportunity to compete with the enterprise-level corporation

Power BI

Power BI, how to level the playing field for your small business.

Small to medium-size businesses often struggle with implementing company-wide analysis programs due to the high cost associated with big data reporting and assessment. In the past, these types of planning software packages required lots of money to purchase and roll out. On top of that, a business owner had to spend money on training someone to be able to read and interpret the information provided.

Microsoft Power BI, offering the same level of performance analytics the big companies use for a fraction of the cost.

Power BI is a cloud-based, business data analysis application. Geared specifically for the small to medium business, Power BI makes big data analytics available to the business owner at a fraction of the cost of other resource tracking/planning softwares. No matter the size of your company, the importance of big data and programs that analyze it correctly is essential. Collecting, assessing, and interpreting data from all pertinent business activities is the way to move your company forward quickly. From sales to production, manufacturing and delivery, Power BI gathers information from all departments on a daily basis, then presents that information to the user.

Easy to use, easy to understand.

Power BI implements a series of user-friendly dashboards and color-coded spread sheets designed to be user friendly and easily understood. By connecting users to a broad scope of data pertaining to all aspects of their business, it allows for rapid analysis and the ability to focus on areas of concern immediately. Power BI runs the analytics daily, there is never a lag time for fresh data.

Top benefits of Power BI.

  • Your data belongs to you. No longer do you have outside companies storing your data and providing it only after a lengthy request Your marketing data, lead and website tracking data, sales data are all kept in-house and available at the touch of a key. This kind of “information immediacy” and internal resource tracking allows your company to make quicker decisions, resulting in faster turn-around and reduced costs. With Power BI you own the data, you mine it yourself and perform the analysis of that information on-site and in-house.
  • For a small business to stay competitive and ahead of the curve requires quick responses on important business decisions. From determining the best products to carry based on market analysis to selecting the best suppliers based on cost and quality analysis, quick decisions are key. The faster an informed decision is made, the sooner you can move product to market. Power BI gives your company the back-story on all data interpreted with the express intent of helping you make the right decision. When you know which markets are growing and where demand is flourishing, you can take advantage of that dynamic instantly.

Because Power BI runs its analytics daily, any deviation in performance will be reported to you. Whether it be marketing shifts, sales force lulls or inventory movement above and beyond regular patterns When you are made aware of an issue at the moment it occurs, you can focus your energies more closely on resolving an issue. Being this agile and resilient in the milieu of a small business is key to success.

  • Low- Cost.Power BI offers “enterprise- level” data analysis at a fraction of the cost. Because it is a cloud-based service you pay a low monthly fee and enjoy all the benefits the big companies pay thousands for. As a small business, anything you can leverage to enhance your bottom line helps you stay competitive.

Summary.

Big data; collection and analysis is no longer reserved for the larger companies. Smaller companies need to take advantage of every resource they can in order to stay competitive in the modern business world. Power BI was created with small to medium sized businesses in mind to level the playing field. When you are ready to move your company into the data fast-track please contact us.


Non-Stock Kits in Acumatica

I have repeatedly been asked if MaxQ had a product that could help get shippers created for kit items that were not in stock.  While we are about to release an Auto-Kit module (more on this later), most of the requirements can be handled by what appears to be a little known feature already in Acumatica’s Inventory Module, Non-Stock Kits.

Taken from the Acumatica help:

“When a non-stock kit is listed on a sales order as a line item, its stock components are specified on a pick list and shipped to the customer. Upon shipment confirmation, the quantity of stock components is decreased while the quantities of non-stock components and kits are not tracked in any way.

Only the standard cost valuation method may be assigned to non-stock kits.

On the sale of a non-stock kit with stock components, the system generates an inventory issue and debits the COGS accounts of the stock components (by their costs). On the sale of a non-stock kit with only non-stock components, no inventory issue is generated.”

Create Non-Stock Kit Inventory ID

Create a non-stock inventory item to be the parent part.

non-stock-items-1

Create Kit Specifications

Enter the kit specifications.

non-stock-items-2

Note: The was a fix in release 5.3.249 properly displayed the Non-stock check box.

Enter a Sales Order

Create a sales order for the non-stock kit

Enter a sales order that has the non-stocking kit inventory Id on it

non-stock-items-3

Component Inventory Check

Try to create Shipment.

non-stock-items-4

An error will be raised if a component does not have sufficient availability.

non-stock-items-5

non-stock-items-6

Receive Component Inventory

Create Shipment when component inventory is available.

non-stock-items-7

After the component is received into inventory, a shipment can now be generated.

Print Pick List

Notice Components Show on Pick List

non-stock-items-8

non-stock-items-9


6 Uses for Microsoft Power BI

Microsoft Power BI is an essential software system for businesses with large amounts of disparate data created during the normal course of business operations. There are many uses for a software system like Power BI (BI stands for Business Intelligence).

The following six uses, visualization, server-level management, integrated analytics, streamlined processes, and detail oriented visualization give your business the tools to process information and create quality management systems.

  1. Intuitive Visualization

Visualization of data is essential for human management of business systems. While computer programs eat data for lunch, business people have rather more varied diets and need to be able to easily see and understand data regarding their business. A great program like Power BI gives you the tools to swiftly and accurately visualize key data points regarding your business from many different sources in a single dashboard.

Not only does Power BI provide great visualization, but it also integrates with Cortana by default. This means that you can visualize data, interact with it in your OS, and search your data with Cortana’s powerful AI systems.

  1. Server-Level Data Management

Data comes into your business from a variety of sources. Most of those sources touch a server at some point. Power BI gives you tools to manage business information at the server level so that you have more comprehensive and complete information systems than would be provided if you merely collected data from a program operating on several computers.

  1. Integrate Analytics With Internal Software Systems

What software systems do you use to manage your business? These are your internal software systems. Managing your business processes requires that you access data from the entire software system you use to manage your business. As seen by the list of compatible software programs, Power BI integrates with almost any software platform you will use for business management. This includes mail management, social media platforms, accounting software, CRMs, and traditional data platforms like Azure and MySQL. Integrated data management means your business does not need to use multiple dashboards for data management: Power BI will give you all the information you need.

  1. Provide Complex Information Within Your Own External Software and Apps

Not only does Power BI take information from a variety of sources, but it also provides it in a variety of contexts, including embedded within your own apps through Microsoft’s API. Not only does this give you tools to manage your own business with custom apps, but it also gives you a product value-add that you can create for your customers where they are able to track and identify key data sets regarding your product or service.

  1. Streamline Processes (Sales, Marketing, Operations, etc.)

Sales, marketing, operations, HR, and other business departments often create their own data sets, their own KPIs and need their own data management. Power BI provides specific functionality for customers who can use its comprehensive data management to streamline processes in different departments.

Rather than recreating the wheel for each part of your business, Power BI comes with the templates for intuitive dashboards and reporting systems to give teams the ability to manage their quality and efficiency without customizing the software.

  1. Visualize Details Easily

A great BI dashboard like Power BI gives you the capability to dial in to any level of detail you need to ensure that your business is running successfully. While some businesses need to be able to track small amounts of inventory, others need to track sales calls made by sales team members. Each of these data sets can be called up with Power BI’s algorithms and delivered in a readable and understandable format.

For more information on business management and quality control systems, please contact us today and ask how to integrate Power BI with your current software systems.

 


Business Intelligence Software: Benefits to Combining Internal and External Data

Business Intelligence

Finding business intelligence software that gives you a complete picture of everything in your business isn’t always easy to find. It’s one reason maybe you’ve waited to invest in BI software, even though you’re realizing doing too much guesswork about business reality isn’t smart.

In today’s more competitive business climate, not knowing everything about your business can end up hurting you in the long run. All it takes is overlooking one tiny piece of information, and it could snowball into a bigger problem financially.

Going with a “gut feel” about your company should never be a way to envision the future. More so, when customers demand quicker responses in services you provide, you have to make quicker decisions.

BI brings all of this to you, frequently using real-time technology. The problem is that while you may have insight into internal issues, should you also look externally?

When you integrate an internal and external view of your company, you get a wider view since outside situations could directly affect what happens internally.

The Online World as an Outside Source

Placing the Internet into the business intelligence equation, you have a vast digital world to explore in how it affects your business. The challenge behind this is far too much BI software out there ignores data from the Internet.

So much is happening online you need to explore, including your own role in marketing. Social media alone has many areas to explore, including how your content performs there and how people interact during conversations. More so, you can get an idea of which social media channel works the best with your content so you eliminate the ones not working as well.

One danger about social media is spreading yourself too thin and not properly targeting the right demographics. BI can study metrics there, plus other places where you’re not directly involved. For instance, BI could scan industry message boards to see what people are talking about and if they happen to mention your company.

Exploring outside databases from financial or marketing research companies could bring deeper insights as well, though it’s not always easy to gather this or put in a readable form.

Remember, offline environments are just as valuable. Looking at variables out in the real world could end up shaping things more than anything you find online.

Using BI to Understand Nature

You may not think something as simple as the weather could apply to your business, and yet it can when it comes to something like logistics. Getting products delivered on time matters when related to weather.

Studying BI on weather patterns and other acts of nature gives you a better idea of how to prepare and the best days for deliveries.

Metrics on Populations in Specific Regions

As part of your marketing efforts, you want to know what regions to target if doing offline advertising. Looking at the analytics behind the populace you sell to gives you more variables on the neighborhoods they live in, what their incomes are, and even what crime statistics are.

All of these potentially give you deeper insight into the people you market to and how your products help them solve problems.

Socioeconomic Factors in Determining Business Success

If you own a brick-and-mortar business depending on in-person visitors, analyzing socioeconomic factors about your area determines what kind of customers you’ll attract.

Studying this before you even open your business doors gives you insight into where you should locate, or if you need to move to a different region.

Contact us at MaxQ Technologies, Inc. so we can help you with reliable business intelligence software in finding thorough data.


Backup Button In Blue For Archiving And Storage

Why Companies Are Shifting to Cloud Backup

Cloud Computing

As the need for data storage and backup increases exponentially from year to year it creates a significant challenge for businesses. Since data is the most valuable asset for most organizations, it’s not only important to have adequate backup for digital information, but it’s also important that data be accessible whenever needed and it must be kept secure from threats. Also, because company budgets are tight, organizations are seeking to consolidate technology rather than expand it. Given these facts, the strategy of continually buying more storage devices is not feasible.

For most businesses, especially smaller ones with less than 500 employees, the preferred solution is to move data backup to the cloud. By adopting this strategy, companies eliminate the hassles of data backup without relinquishing control, and usually with reduced costs. Read on to learn about the primary reasons that most companies are switching to cloud backup.

Reduced IT expenditures

According to Gartner, a leading research organization in IT research, the number one reason cited by CIOs for shifting to cloud backup was cost. By moving the backup to a cloud vendor, a company saves on a variety of costs, including space, energy, computer hardware, software, and maintenance. Plus, backup operations are automated and streamlined, which provides additional savings on personnel costs.

Enhanced Security

According to research by the Ponemon Institute, the average cost for a data breach is $3.79 million. Many small and medium-sized businesses do not adequately invest in protecting data. Cloud backup vendors offer a variety of security features to protect data such as encryption, password management, digital signatures, adaptive protection and agentless backup technology. A good cloud backup service provides proactive and adaptive protection against security and privacy breaches on a continuous basis.

Ease of Scalability

As data storage needs continue to grow rapidly, scalability has become crucial for many businesses. By using a cloud backup service, companies need not worry about hardware upgrades, increased maintenance costs, or additional space requirements. There are also no concerns about server sprawl, data sprawl, or business interruptions that result from adding new hardware, network infrastructure or software upgrades. Most cloud vendors are willing to scale with a company’s data growth while ensuring that data remains readily accessible.

Data Recovery

 

It is essential to have access to backed up data whenever needed. Cloud backup vendors provide a variety of options for data recovery and have a state-of-the-art infrastructure that ensures backups and restorations are done quickly and efficiently. These procedures can be done through an intuitive, one-step, point-and-click interface. Some vendors also offer bare-metal recovery, which restores drives that have been destroyed by natural disasters or corrupted software.

Regulation Compliance

One of the major concerns companies have about their data relates to regulatory compliance issues. In the event that a company must provide documents or records to demonstrate compliance, data often needs to be accessed quickly. Some on-site solutions like tape backup can delay data access for days, which could be potentially disastrous in a critical situation. Cloud backup services prevent these disasters by providing fast access to data whenever it’s needed and by providing templates that suggest the recommended backup plans for each industry recommended backup type and frequency such as HIPPA, PCI, etc.

Manage Duplication of Files

A major reason for inefficiency in many organizations is overly-duplicated data. For example, a video or PowerPoint presentation, when worked on by over a dozen employees, could end up being backed up many times, which unnecessarily burdens your company’s system. A cloud backup service can offer solutions that compress and eliminate unneeded duplicates, only backing up changed or new data, thereby resulting in greater efficiency and organization.

Given all the advantages listed here, it is apparent why the majority of organizations are making the switch from traditional on-premises technology to cloud backup services.

To learn more about cloud backup technology, or to find out how to leverage a variety of other IT solutions for your business, contact us today.


The Superb Combination of Power BI, IoT, and Azure Stream Analytics.

Power BI

If John Greenough, who is a Senior Research Analyst for BI (Business Insider) Intelligence is to be believed, there will be an astounding 24 billion devices comprising the IoT by the year 2020, according to an article by John Greenough and Jonathan Camhi titled How the ‘Internet of Things’ will affect the world.  This monumental development now in play is being called the next Industrial Revolution and is expected to generate $6 trillion worth of spending over the next 5 years.

For the business management or high-tech professional in the line of decision making the question naturally becomes, how is value generated from the use of hundreds, thousands, or even millions of sensors, from automated and internet-enabled machinery on assembly lines, in supply chains and throughout transportation networks, from continuous video feeds emanating from countless intelligent devices, etc.  A big part of the answer lies in turning all of this data into a form that the human mind can readily comprehend.  Herein lies the genius of Microsoft Power BI.

Power BI has about 5 million users and features excellent graphic visuals that turn live data into rich displays.  And Power BI just received an extremely useful and powerful update with the addition of Azure Stream Analytics, which acts as a bridge between Power BI and the IoT.  “By integrating Power BI, Microsoft’s business intelligence and analytics product, and Microsoft’s Azure Stream Analytics, it is now possible to create interactive, live dashboards that offer users an up-to-the-minute overview of their IoT device deployments,” according to a blog by apacciooutlook.com titled Azure Stream Analytics Integrates with Power BI; Converts IoT Data into Real-time Insights.

“Devices are becoming smarter and more connected, and the expectation of what can be done with the data generated and collected from these devices continues to evolve both in the commercial and consumer spaces. Whether you are doing health monitoring, building or home automation, social media analytics, application monitoring, energy management, manufacturing, etc., there are millions of events or messages being generated from devices from which you need to gain real-time insights,” according to comments derived from a speech by Dipanjan Banik, Bryan Hollar, Richard McCormack, Clemens Szyperski, and Todd Van Nurden titled Gaining Real-Time IoT Insights using Azure Stream Analytics, AzureML and PowerBI.  The devices which generate events or messages can include things like internet-intelligent sensors, tracking devices, and alerts in appliances and in machinery, to name but a few of the myriad possibilities.  Of course, there are intelligent cars, airplanes, and even entire ‘smart cities’ currently under development, with an untold number of internet-intelligent devices built-in.

One of the things that makes all of this up-to-the-minute information rendered in the graphical format of Power BI so great is that oftentimes problems can be spotted immediately, greatly shortening the response time.  Ryan CrawCour, a program manager at Microsoft Azure Stream Analytics, states:  “This (adding the power of Azure Stream Analytics to Power BI) will dramatically reduce the latency and time to action on your most important business metrics,” from an article by Pedro Hernandez titledMicrosoft Power BI Visualizes IoT Data From Azure Stream Analytics.  A good implementation can conceivably upload, process, analyse and display all manufacturing and other procedural data instantaneously, regardless of physical location.  So “Intelligent systems enable users to parse vast quantities of data from multiple disparate sources and then display the data visually in a way that helps business trends to stand out,” according to Brien Posey in an article titled Microsoft’s Power BI puts business users at forefront.

In the world of software development, APIs that feed data into Power BI are being built left and right, because “data is exploding and the ability to take that and do interesting things with it so you can provide more productive apps is the opportunity everyone wants to embrace,” according to James Phillips, here quoted in an article by Mary Branscombe titled Embedded Power BI Microsoft cloud apps could all turn into platforms.  Software developers like Carl de Souza, writing in an article titled Why I Love Power BI, Top 10 Reasons, love Power BI because of its ability to easily create great visualizations, share reports, run on a wide variety of mobile devices, refresh data according to schedule, and pull data from many different sources, among other great advantages.

The future is shaping up to be an amazing arena of great challenge as more billions of intelligent devices come online and the data continues to flood in at volumes that are so vast and from so many disparate sources that it boggles the human imagination.  Microsoft Power BI and Microsoft Azure Stream Analytics will continue to be right in the thick of this intense and unprecedented wave of development that’s poised to change the world forever.

For more information, please contact us.