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Continuous intelligence promises to improve the pace of business -- and the bottom line

So what needs to be done to turn the potential of CEP/CI into reality? Business rules must be created and defined in an SQL-like language.

The same guys that have been buying BI for years will understand and buy these kinds of solutions, says Cunningham.

Continuous intelligence will allow companies to process data that has been around for decades but has been ignored. From shop-floor maintenance, where sensors monitor machine vibrations and send alerts when thresholds suggest something is out of whack, to airport baggage conveyor belts that send alerts the moment a bag falls off rather than relying on a Crystal Report to match scans before and after bags pass through the system, CI will improve the way we do business.

Business problems are getting more complex, and applications need to keep up, notes Cunningham.

When I asked Cunningham what's next, his response encapsulated for me what I like best about technology and its possibilities.

He said that he didn't really know, only that there's someone out there who will take this technology and say, "Wow, you know what I can build with this!"

Ingenuity and possibility. That's what keeps me excited about this industry.

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