Open Source Business Intelligence: is Nextanalytics Open Source? I doubt

Nextanalytics , a business intelligence company based in Ottawa, announced the availability of the Nextanalytics 3.0, a business analytics platform with a proprietary analytic engine and an open source tier needed to integrate it with third parties’ applications and solutions.

In a marketing move, nextanalytics claims to be open source while making source code available only partially.

Marketing claims Marketing claims by Domenico Sav

Reading some posts on the subject I found Ward Yaternickh, Nextanalytics founder and CEO, saying:

We’re actively soliciting a community of third-party consultants, ISVs, and sole proprietor developers to offer services and products that employ nextanalytics to do their data integration and processing. We have great technology and now, with our new open-source inspired, community-driven Web site, we have made it easy to work with nextanalytics. Now, any dev shop can distinguish themselves with our software as their analytics engine. Through this strategy, we hope to be the next MySQL, but with a focus on business analytics.

The developer zone doesn’t look community driven at the present stage, as honestly recognizes Ward who told me that the ROI to create a proper forge is still uncertain. Nextanalytics has clearly also very little to do even with new MySQL’s approach (where some add-ons could be eventually distributed as proprietary pluggable features), so I asked some clarifications.

How open source you are?

For a nominal, (interpret “fair”) annual fee, people can get some analytic functionality to improve what they use to make business decisions, and as much open source code as they need to integrate into their environments. If they can find something useful in our list of features, then the cost-benefit is obvious. If we don’t have what they need, then they have to go up-market and pay a lot more. That is why nextanalytics exists, to sell to that market.

Nextanalytics is aiming at making programmers’ lives easier, providing them with open source reference implementations and documentation to do things faster and easier. So far, so good.

Does it make them an open source company? I don’t think so.

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