The biggest technical challenge we expect to face in the coming year is that of establishing a closer connection between our browser-based Online product and our Windows desktop product. Users are increasingly anxious to be able to access statistical software anywhere, anytime, from any computer, which is best accomplished with an SAAS (Software as a Service) implementation that can be accessed from within any web browser. Yet many users also like the security and speed offered by a native, desktop application. Creating a seamless integration of the two environments so that the user can switch between the two at will creates challenges in managing both data and output.
With each new release, we add both new statistical capabilities and enhancements to the user interface. As there is no end in sight to variations in the type of data users wish to analyze, we see no end to new statistical capabilities that can be added. At the same time, increases in hardware speed and memory make possible procedures that could not have been run on earlier desktops.
With the release of a 64-bit product that can access large amounts of memory, the amount of data that can be readily handled by STATGRAPHICS has increased dramatically. Consequently, it is now feasible to add data mining capabilities designed for much larger data sets than could be handled on 32-bit computers. At the same time, the type of graphical output that works for smaller datasets often fails when the datasets get large. Consequently, one of our focuses will be on implementing new methods for visualizing large amounts of data. We are also cognizant of the opportunities that implementation of Six Sigma programs present to companies who are necessarily struggling to contain costs and increase productivity and efficiency in the current economic climate. We have added numerous new features such as Monte Carlo simulation, statistical tolerance limits and other functions that are geared toward making projects easier and more importantly, successful, for Six Sigma practitioners. We are continuing to develop new features to add to this segment of the software which we will be announcing as they are developed in the coming months.