I’m back from Analytics 2012 in Cologne (Germany). It was an excellent 2-days conference organized by SAS. More than 400 participants from 32 countries. Keynote talks discussed topics such as big data (classical nowadays), high-performance analytics (SAS-oriented), social network mining (so trendy) and text analytics. Some keynotes were very interesting, but the added value was from the standard talks.
Four parallel tracks were organized during the two days. Three were focused on specific industry applications, while the last one was oriented towards SAS tools. Among the topics covered by the conference, one can mention forecasting (demand, electricity, etc.), retail loss prevention and supply chain optimization. Particularly the forecasting topic was very well described by experts in the field. I really appreciated the talks from Sven Crone (Lancaster University) and Marcel Baumgartner (Nestlé). They both showed their expertise in the field of time series prediction.
Although the conference was organized by SAS, most of the talks were oriented towards applications and the way to solve them, rather than (SAS) tools. One of the presenter even showed a screenshot from SPSS: the best proof it was not a SAS-restricted event (!) Nothing to say about the organization, food and location. As usual with SAS, everything is perfect. To conclude, Analytics 2012 certainly was the analytical industry-oriented event in Europe. I learned a lot during these two days, thanks to all presenters and SAS!