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Taking a Look at Malaysia’s Big Data Infrastructure With Teradata Country Manager Saqib Sabah


Big Community was privileged once again to interview a giant in the data analytics and big data field, Teradata. On hand to answer our questions was Country Manager, Saqib Sabah.

Teradata is a company that develops and sells a relational database management system (RDBMS) with the same name. Their data warehouse system stores and manages data using a ‘shared nothing’ architechture with every node possessing its own memory and power. Text analytics are used to track unstructured data in word processor documents and semi-structured data.

Teradata’s product is also used for business analysis, allowing data warehouses to track company data, such as sales, customer preferences and product placement.

We queried Saqib on how Asean countries are stacking up in big data adoption in comparison with the other parts of the world. He sees there is a growing belief within the region towards big data adoptions. With more data then comes more responsibility in governing those data.

“How do we make sure data is managed in a proper way and companies are not lost”, he says adding that it is important to look at the architecture that goes into managing the data that are going into those companies.

With the many initiatives being spearheaded by the government in bringing the digital technology into the country, thus building up its infrastructure. Saqib believes that the more data scientists we have in the country and in the organisation, the faster the adoption of those technologies will take place.

“We are still lacking in talent within the organisations we come across. I think there is a huge potential there with the opportunity and demand from the organisations”, he added. Having the right expertise in n organisation who knows how to organise and manage their data will be a great advantage to adopting big data on the fly.

However, the speed at which data scientists are being produced leave to question if at all they are equipped to lead a team into pretty much unchartered territory in terms of where the company will be headed within its own scope of the digital era.

Sadiq agrees but puts a point across that although he isn’t aware of the curriculum that the students are receiving within the ‘crash course’, he believes the right path would be for them to be partnered with senior data scientists.

“There’s a bandwagon effect going on now within the industry. It is a good starting point for students to add on additional skills if they already have a business understanding”. Although he adds that having a crash course program to train data scientists is not the answer to fill the void of demand.

The know-how needed for students to have in a business environment, can only be acquired through years of actual work. This will still be a missing ingredient to future data scientists if it is not addressed soon.

Sadiq however believes that it is a good initiative in growing the industry to reach its full potential as things are moving very fast, therefore having structure and governance will not be an easy task. Though it may not be the perfect solution, it is a good initiative to start with.