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The dream of effortless BI deployment has always been sweeter than the reality. Some of the most significant barriers arise during acquisition. Combing through the components to figure out which ones you must buy to get the features you're looking for can feel like rummaging through a really expensive, very high-tech flea market.
Newly surfaced Tableau Software aims to revolutionize the acquisition and deployment process with its product suite, Tableau Professional and Standard Editions. To a significant degree, it has succeeded, especially on the acquisitions side.
The currently dominant acquisition model, vertical integration, is based on the idea that data distribution and analysis tools should come from the vendors who store, compile, or organize the data. In its own way, vertical integration makes good sense for buyers already committed to a single vendor's data warehouse or integrated BI suite.
But acquisition through …