Analysis of text mining/custom publishing vendor nStein and its products. Related subjects include:

November 1, 2007

What TEMIS is seeing in the marketplace

CEO Eric Bregand of Temis recently checked in by email with an update on text mining market activity. Highlights of Eric’s views include:

July 22, 2007

Text analytics marketplace trends

It was tough to judge user demand at the recent Text Analytics Summit because, well, very few users showed up. And frankly, I wasn’t as aggressive at pumping vendors for trends as I am some other times. That said, I have talked with most text analytics vendors recently,* and here are my impressions of what’s going on. Any contrary – or confirming! — opinions would be most welcome.

*Factiva is the most significant exception. Hint, hint.

If you think about it, text analytics is a “secret ingredient” in search, antispam, and data cleaning,* and this dominates all other uses of the technology. A significant minority of the research effort at companies that do any kind of text filtering is – duh — text analytics. Cold comfort for specialist text analytics vendors, to be sure, but that’s the way it is.

*I.e., part of the “T” in “ETL” (Extract/Transform/Load).

Text-analytics-enhanced custom publishing will surely at some point become a must-have for business and technical publishers. However, it appears that we’re not quite there yet, as large publishers make do with simple-minded search and the like. In what I suspect is a telling market commentary, there’s no headlong rush among vendors to dump text mining for custom publishing, notwithstanding the examples of nStein and (sort of) ClearForest. I don’t want to be overly negative – either my friends at Mark Logic are doing just fine or else they’re putting up a mighty brave front – but I don’t think the nonspecialist publishing market is there yet. Read more

June 14, 2007

Is nStein ‘n trouble?

nStein canceled out of the Text Analytics Summit, with some bizarre behavior. For example, to the last moment they insisted they were showing up. But then they didn’t, leaving me holding the bag on the Marketing Panel. (Fortunately, Olivier Jouve of SPSS pinch-hit expertly on very short notice.)

This kind of odd reclusiveness is usually a sign of an impending corporate transaction, or at least a desire for one (cf. ClearForest). But for the premier potential buyers there are several stronger and more attractive alternatives to mate with.

And as I pointed out to several folks today, being located in Montreal is unlikely to give nStein a leg up in being acquired by Cognos. That’s not how Cognos evaluates acquisitions.

March 21, 2007

Text Analytics Summit marketing panel: Membership firmed up

We’ve now solidified the membership of the Text Analytics Summit marketing panel. It is:

Michelle, Michel, and Mary are all obvious choices, responsible for marketing at leading text mining vendors. In addition, Mary has excelled on the same panel in the past, Michel sent me e-mail with some brilliant thoughts on the panel subject, and Attensity has one of the most interesting strategies in the text analytics market.

As for Dave — he’s simply one of the most astute marketing theorists working in software today. And he runs a very interesting text technology company. And he used to be most senior marketing guy in all of business intelligence, when he was SVP at Business Objects. In his copious free time, he writes a really cool blog.

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