In 1799, French archaeologists uncovered a large stone in Memphis, Egypt. On the stone was a decree carved during the Hellenistic period, a time when the Egyptians and Greeks were trading and living together. However, this was more than any stone, as it included three versions of the same decree, one in ancient Greek, one in Demotic script, and another in ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics. After scholars translated the Demotic and Greek versions to find only minor differences, they gained a new understanding of a text that had eluded them.

 The discovery of the Rosetta Stone marked an incredible historic moment, allowing researchers the ability to translate, comprehend, and decipher previously untranslated hieroglyphic script.

The Open Data Initiative

Last year, three companies announced an initiative to make a common language for the cloud. A rare move by three companies who are traditionally considered competitors, the Open Data Initiative was introduced to provide a platform for a single, comprehensive view of data, bringing together and enriching data from all your lines of business, across all your systems to deliver real-time intelligence back into your applications and services.

With the fruits of the Open Data Initiative, companies will no longer need to have engineers spend time getting all their data ready for further crunching, nor will they need teams of data scientists, Alysa Taylor, corporate vice president for business applications and global industry, told CNBC in an interview.

This marked a turning point in the cloud, a time in which these three companies have discovered that it’s easier to collaborate to deliver bespoke products for end users than try to be everything to everyone. Built on continuous improvement, the Open Data Initiative will deliver easier integrations, providing its own Rosetta Stone of for business applications.

 “You have these very sophisticated, rich application suites from SAP, from Adobe, from Microsoft. And the commitment you’re hearing from the three of us is that we’re going to unlock the data across all of these suites,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said during the announcement. “There [are] no data silos. Think of all data as a continuous renewable resource.”

Unlocking Your Data—No Matter Where It’s From

According to Microsoft, the Open Data Initiative is built on three core focuses: Unify Data, Empower AI, and Enhance Your Applications:

  • Unify your business data: A common data model, and a common data lake help you say goodbye to costly, complex disconnected data silos—and realize your data’s full potential.
  • Enable AI-driven insight: Use AI to gain a deeper understanding of your business. Drive real-time insights and actions at scale—your data becomes a renewable resource that is continuously enriched.
  • Enhance your applications and services: Take advantage of a new class of services that consume enriched data to deliver real-time personalized experiences to your customers.

Leveraging Your Data: Make Smarter Decisions with Power BI

The announcement and continued evolution of the Open Data Initiative marks an important step for these three companies to help end users make better decisions with more information. However, just as the Rosetta Stone would have been useless without a translator, you need something to make data more understandable for everyone.

Enter Power BI. Built to empower the Citizen Data Scientist, Power BI is an easy to use platform that can improve decision making. Designed to offer data visualization and business intelligence capabilities, this solution can bring in data from hundreds of sources and improve everyone’s ability to analyze and use data. We’ve helped companies like yours to set up Power BI, integrate it with the applications they currently use, and make decisions with better data.

See a couple of our success stories including Wildlife Trading CompanyAP&G, and Kayco, and read our guide to business intelligence.

Additional Business Intelligence Resources

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Business Intelligence Made Easy—Power BI Case Study

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