Your Company's Next User Interface: It's the Data

No doubt, your business has customer-facing applications -- whether it's your website, a newsletter or mobile apps. And you want to design those applications for each of the four big IT waves -- cloud, mobile, big data and social. So where do you start?

The simple answer comes from Russell Foltz-Smith, VP of data platform at TrueCar -- the online marketplace for buying and selling cars. During a colorful keynote at Hadoop Summit this morning, Foltz-Smith told attendees to stop focusing on cool, neat capabilities for applications.

TrueCar Data Guru Russell Foltz-Smith

TrueCar Data Guru Russell Foltz-Smith

Instead, Foltz-Smith said, focus on two things:

  1. Speed -- the speed at which you can roll out new capabilities to your customers.
  2. Data Search -- how to make your data accessible to your customers. 

Easily searchable data, he insisted, is the next-generation user interface. And it's here today... as displayed in TrueCar's own user interface...


Foltz-Smith shared dozens of metrics during his keynote. At some point, those data points will likely surface in a case study on Information Management -- a website that covers the big data and analytics movement.

Data Equals Engagement

Still, there's a far more important message here. Most small businesses ignore or don't even understand the big data wave. They're overwhelmed by application priorities across web and mobile platforms. They're not sure how to engage existing and target customers.

The answers are in the data -- how you gather, manage, organize, safeguard and monetize the data. Oh, and the piece most businesses overlook: How you expose that data to your customers to create a deeper relationship.

How will After Nines Inc. eventually expose our data to you? And what data sets will we expose? Here's my usual answer -- for now: Stay tuned.

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