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SAS takes open approach with Viya cloud platform

SAS takes open approach with Viya cloud platform 

The company is touting that cognitive services, including question-answer systems will power analytics, provide users with recommendations and learn from user responses.

Viya is SAS’s first foray into open environment

SAS is also providing its customers access to cognitive analytics and deep learning capabilities in an open platform, which the company says will make it easier and faster for application developers to build cognitive solutions, said Fiona McNeill, global product marketing manager at SAS.

This openness means the new platform will have “deep integration with Hadoop, Linux, .Net, Java, Phyton, and Lua,” she told reporters during a media briefing. . Viya will also offer connections to REST APIs.

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“One thing we’re trying to do from a strategy perspective is give that openness to a data slinger, a computer scientist, a programmer, and give them access to these cognitive applications,” said Wayne Thompson, SAS chief of data scientist. “That will triple the number of developers we have here at SAS.”

“This is our first foray in the open environment,” said Roberto Moreira, senior product marketing manager for advanced analytics, data mining and machine/deep learning at SAS. “It’s a world-class platform, but it doesn’t care what language it’s learning.”

New analytics products

SAS Viya features the following new products: :

SAS Visual Analytics – offers visual data discovery, interactive reporting and self-service data exploration. It is already deployed at thousands of sites around the globe and will be among the first products available on SAS Viya.

SAS Visual Statistics – features a graphical user interface and a predictive modeling and programming interface. Users can interactively create and refine models for specific groups or segments and quickly reveal insights.

SAS Visual Investigator – is a new product that provides graphical and interactive intelligence management and investigation capabilities. It enables intelligence analysts and investigators to reduce false positives, streamline the investigation process and fight fraud or improve customer segmentation. SAS Visual Investigator supports search, query and visualization of data, regardless of format, size and location, as well as investigations using geospatial, network, and temporal visualizations.

SAS Visual Data Mining and Machine Learning – is a new product that extends market leading SAS advanced analytics. SAS Visual Data Mining and Machine Learning is aimed at data scientists who want to easily apply machine learning and data mining techniques to structured and unstructured data. Developers can build a model once and deploy anywhere.

SAS Visual Data Mining and Machine Learning will also provide a user-friendly interface to expedite model building and code generation. It will address data sourcing, analytical data preparation, feature engineering, dimension reduction, exploratory analysis, modeling and learning, integrated model comparison and implementation of models into production processes.

Cognitive computing

SAS has been using cognitive computing for years now. However, this was done through data mining solutions based on structured data, natural language processing and text analytics.

Deep learning will “tons of data” and require massive computing capabilities, said Thompson.

With Viya, SAS is incorporating unstructured data such as audio, voice, images, social media feeds, chats, e-mail, and geo-location data into cognitive computing.

He envisions new analytics tools that are feature more conversational interfaces such as voice commands and will be able to use machine learning and deep learning to anticipate users’ needs.

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