Merging Disciplines: Bringing BI, Visualization and Storage Together

Leveraging existing, though unrelated technologies to solve problems is something I have been advocating for, for a long time.  With EqualLogic we merged many of the concepts of virtual memory and management automation with storage. This resulted in a storage appliance that could scale in capacity and performance increments without downtime. It also significantly simplified managing storage. It wasn’t obvious at the time that combining these made sense until people saw the new capabilities that were available as a result.


At DataGravity, we continue on our path to merging multiple disciplines with our recent announcement that Jeff Boehm, a longtime marketing and product leader in the world of business intelligence and search, has joined our executive team as vice president of marketing here at DataGravity. After Jeff’s announcement, my inbox, LinkedIn and even my voicemail were buzzing with one question: “Why a BI guy at a storage company?”

I think you probably know the reason. While hardware is the foundation of data storage, software is a critical layer and continues to grow in importance in storage solutions.  Jeff and I recently sat down and discussed this same subject and you’re invited to watch our thoughts on the accompanying video. Software has been the foundation for storage innovation for the last 15 or so years. Sure, there have been incredible improvements in hardware, including, solid state technology, exponential increases in capacity and IOPs performance. However, the bulk of innovations in storage have come in the form of software.

Even with this robust software ecosystem – intended to help the IT pro optimize their storage system – there are tradeoffs in terms of the software adding yet another layer of management and complexity. Add to this the compulsion many business users feel in today’s data centric world to turn this information into actionable data with real value.

That conundrum was what prompted my co-founder John Joseph and I to first put our heads together on what problems we could solve for customers and the type of company we could create. It wasn’t about creating another storage device. We did that with EqualLogic and helped a number of customers, while having a lot of fun.  In our view, storage as we’ve come to know it is missing a critical component: the ability to assist customers in taking advantage of the information contained in their data. By merging multiple disciplines together, storage will play a mission critical role in uncovering the information assets at hand for organizations.

Jeff adds to our ranks from non-storage disciplines including team members from companies like Vertica, Netezza and Endeca, Veeam, VMWare and Basis Technology to name a few plus storage expertise from companies like Dell/EqualLogic and EMC. I’m excited to be working with bright minds from across technology.  Our leadership group – which includes this “BI guy” – and those building and working to bring our product to market bring different perspectives and experiences to the table.  We are working hard to create a product that will redefine storage. Stay tuned to learn more.


Want to change the storage status quo?  Find out more about how you can join our team.

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Paula Long

Paula Long is the CEO and co-founder of DataGravity. She previously co-founded storage provider EqualLogic, which was acquired by Dell for $1.4 billion in 2008. She remained at Dell as vice president of storage until 2010. Prior to EqualLogic, she served in engineering management positions at Allaire Corporation and oversaw the ClusterCATS product line at Bright Tiger Technologies. She is a graduate of Westfield State College.