Business Intelligence, that is. Bill McColl, writing at Computing at Scale, shares some thoughts in his post, “Today’s Business Intelligence: What’s Good About It?”
…For modeling and analyzing stored data, the next generation of Excel will routinely handle spreadsheets with 20-100 million rows on a single PC (see Microsoft demos last week), nowhere near enough to handle serious analytics problems, but also not a toy.
In the emerging manycore world, where the number of software developers with expert-level skills is a tiny fraction of the number required, the Excel power users present a user base that is probably at least an order of magnitude bigger than all others combined, one that already has some experience of modeling, intelligence and analytics, and one that has an insatiable appetite for more and more powerful tools that are easy to use.
And Excel runs on Windows. Another reason that I have been arguing that Windows HPC Server is an important component of increasing the accessibility of HPC.