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Database Systems Journal vol. I, no. 2/2010

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Commercially Available Data Mining Tools used in the Economic Environment Mihai ANDRONIE , Daniel CRIŞAN 1 Academy of Economic Studies, Bucharest, Romania 2 Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich, Switzerland mihai_a380@yahoo.com, crisand@student.ethz.ch This paper presents some of the most common commercially available data mining tools, with their most important features, side by side, and some considerations regarding the evaluation of data mining tools by companies that want to acquire such a system. Among some of the most important factors that a company has to take into account are the amounts of data available, how it is stored and the data mining tasks that must be performed, but there are also others. Not the last it should be mentioned that the cost of a data mining system is important for a company, having a limiting effect on the expansion of the data mining products market towards small companies. Keywords: Data Mining, Data Analysis, Information System, Data Mining Tools 1 2

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Introduction Following the significant advances in the information technology during the last decades, our society faced an increase of the volume of data produced and stored in various fields of activity. For this reason there were developed various advanced technologies to process the huge volumes of data suggestively called data mining techniques (an analogy to the mining processes that are carried on to extract precious metals from the ground). Data mining answers the need to process huge volumes of data to gain useful information and knowledge in various fields such as market analysis, production control, marketing, scientific research and others. In the economic field there are many benefits of using data mining techniques in integrated information systems. In the following there will be mentioned some of the most important techniques used in conjunction with their range of applicability in the economy. There will also be presented some of the most representative commercial available data mining tools with their most

important features, side by side so that their key features to be outlined to the reader. Not the least important of the material presented in this paper are the factors that a company should take into account before deciding to buy such a commercially available data mining tool, in order to use it for its management to improve its decision making capabilities. Besides using data mining techniques for company management support, among the most useful applications of data mining in economics is the area of retail distribution of merchandise. There exist traditional or online stores that record information in their databases regarding their sales, customers, etc. All this information gathered over a long stretch of time can be analyzed using data mining techniques. Data mining tools can be used even for the improvement of a company’s information system, this having measurable economic consequences even if it isn’t an economic purpose in its own.

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Commercially Available Data Mining Tools used in the Economic Environment

Economic, technologic and other processes

Data (data bases, data warehouses, etc.) Data Mining

Information and knowledge that is useful in enterprise management

Management decisions

Fig. 1. The role of the data mining techniques in taking management decisions We have for the cases previously described different applications of the data mining techniques [4] such as: • The well known marketing problem [3] of shopping basket analysis from which there can be obtained different relationships between the products which were sold together in the past; • Using data mining techniques to assist in designing data warehouses for a specific application. In this way one can more easily determine what dimensions should be included in such a model, according to the data available; • Determining the effectiveness of sales campaigns...
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