New Relic Aims to Make Big Data Access Easier With Analytics Cloud

Software analytics firm New Relic kicked off its user conference with the announcement of more visual tools to discover data insights through its Analytics Cloud for big data.

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SAN FRANCISCO–Thanks to the Internet and cloud technology, software companies have more customer purchase data than ever before. But extracting actionable insights from that data quickly or even in real time has been a challenge.

Software analytics provider New Relic is gaining fans among software developers by making it easier to gain such insights. At its third annual FutureStack user conference here Nov. 12, the vendor announced the immediate availability of Software Analytics Cloud with a more visual interface designed to make its New Relic Insights suite more accessible.

The more intuitive point and click Data Explorer interface gives users the ability to make data inquiries such as what items are visitors clicking on at a specific website without requiring the query to be written in the company’s NRQL (New Relic Query Language). With the added simplicity of the graphical interface, the company said business analysts and others will have an easier time accessing data captured by New Relic software, which is typically used by developers.

CEO and Founder Lew Cirne said New Relic’s proprietary, multi-tenant cloud analytics NRDB database collects more than 2 million events per second. In total he said New Relic collects 18 billion events a day. “We built a super cluster so you don’t have to,” Cirne said in his keynote remarks. “We don’t think there’s a database remotely like this in the cloud.”

An impressive lineup of blue chip companies among its 13,000 customers use New Relic to get real time insights into such things as website performance, including up-to-the-second stats on page views, the number of users on their sites and what products are being clicked on.

Executives from News Corp., Rackspace and Roku were among the customers who spoke on stage during the morning keynote, along with Stephen Orban, global head of enterprise strategy at Amazon Web Services, a New Relic partner.

Cirne also offered a sneak peek of a new capability the company plans to deliver. It provides real-time tracking of websites' response time, with page loads and performance statistics in a specific region of the country displayed on a heat map. “You’ll be able to see patterns in response time that only New Relic can provide in real time,” said Cirne.

News Corp. CTO Paul Cheesbrough said his company has embedded New Relic software across all its operations globally, which includes Fox News and the Wall Street Journal.

“We’ve taken it to every one of our business units so we can instrument what’s happening and compare when the good and not so good stuff happens,” said Cheesbrough. He said last July the Journal saw a sudden 12-fold increase in traffic when it reported an outage at the New York Stock Exchange.

“Normally we could manage that, but there was a human error with Amazon where the auto-scaling wasn’t configured properly,” said Cheesbrough. Because New Relic software was installed, he said the IT department was able to recognize the cause of the problem and resolve it in less than three minutes. “In the old days, we’d have engineers scrambling to figure out what went wrong,” said Cheesbrough.

New Relic also announced that its Pro and Enterprise customers will be able to get eight days of event data from the NRDB database at no additional cost starting Dec. 1.

Cirne said this includes access to all of the event data across every user transaction, in real time, giving customers the ability to instantly query against any dimension of their software data. Customers who want to gain greater visibility into longer time horizons can purchase longer periods of rolling data.

“NRDB, the powerful database behind New Relic Insights, is designed to enable us to collect data from millions of software events every second, and enable companies to run queries against giant data sets to uncover new insights about their applications, their users, and their business,” said Cirne.

“We no longer have to settle for aggregated data. We believe this marks a huge step forward for data nerds everywhere who use software to power their business,” he said.

David Needle

David Needle

Based in Silicon Valley, veteran technology reporter David Needle covers mobile, bi g data, and social media among other topics. He was formerly News Editor at Infoworld, Editor of Computer Currents...