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The Complete Guide to Business Analytics (Collection) by Thomas H. Davenport

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1. What Do We Talk About When We Talk About Analytics?

Thomas H. Davenport

Every decade or so, the business world invents another term for how it extracts managerial and decision-making value from computerized data. In the 1970s the favored term was decision support systems, accurately reflecting the importance of a decision-centered approach to data analysis. In the early ’80s, executive information systems was the preferred nomenclature, which addressed the use of these systems by senior managers. Later in that decade, emphasis shifted to the more technical-sounding online analytical processing (OLAP). The ’90s saw the rise of business intelligence as a descriptor.

Each of these terms has its virtues and its ambiguities. No supreme being has ...

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