By Chet Kapoor, Chairman and CEO, DataStax\n\nToday is all about real-time. Winning enterprises take data, process it, and use it to deliver an instantaneous experience to the customer.\n\nThink about an organization where, at each moment, a recommendation engine is talking to every part of the business \u2013 sharing immediate data on live sales and inventory, the purchasing pipeline, and all the context that impacts the business (market conditions, supply chain issues, even weather). This is nirvana.\n\nEnterprises that rely on processing data in batches and depend on analysts to review dashboards cannot deliver data-driven actions when it matters most \u2013 and they will be left behind.\n\nThe great news is that today we have the right technology to enable every app to meet every customer with a smart, real-time action. Let\u2019s take a look at what real-time data can do and how to activate it in every app, for all your customers.\n\nWhere real-time data is today\n\nConsumers love apps that meet them at the speed of life. Take Starbucks as an example. The Seattle-based coffee company\u2019s app, with 31 million users, is the second most popular point-of-sale app, behind Apple Pay.\n\nWhen a customer orders a drink via the Starbucks app, they expect it to be ready within minutes. They also expect real-time updates throughout the ordering process. And when a customer comes into a store, they get real-time recommendations, based on ordering preferences, past purchases, and even the season. Behind the scenes, Starbucks needs to ensure it has all the right ingredients, someone there to make the drink, an estimate of when the order will be ready for pickup, and the technology to communicate when the order is ready. All of this needs to happen in real-time.\n\nIt isn't just consumer apps that have evolved. John Deere has built a tractor that\u2019s fully autonomous, can be monitored and controlled by a smartphone, detects obstacles in milliseconds, and continuously checks and corrects its position with an accuracy of less than an inch.\n\nStarbucks, John Deere, and so many other enterprises can\u2019t deliver these experiences \u2014 or reap the rewards they offer \u2014 without the right tech stack.\n\nThe open data stack\n\nThe term \u2018real-time\u2019 has been around for a long time. \u2018Reactive apps\u2019 were promoted as the next big thing in the early 2000s. But the technology wasn\u2019t there yet.\n\nToday we have the right tech stack to enable every app to meet every customer with a real-time action. It\u2019s not magic anymore. So, what do you need?\n\nFirst of all, it\u2019s critical to have a data store that\u2019s optimized for customer context and instant access. It\u2019s how you take advantage of your real-time data \u2018at rest.\u2019\n\nNoSQL databases are optimized for modern data applications that require large data volume, low latency, and flexible data models. Apache Cassandra\u00ae is an obvious choice, with its high throughput and ability to support apps that are globally distributed and always-on.\n\nSecondly, customer behaviors and actions need to become visible and available to all applications across an organization. This is where streaming comes in. A best-of-breed streaming system should not only pass events along from one service to another, but store them in a way that keeps their value for future usage. The system also needs to scale to manage tons of data and millions of messages per second \u2013 the kind of performance that real-time apps demand.\n\nApache Pulsar\u2122 is an advanced, open-source streaming and messaging technology that\u2019s ideal for handling real-time data. It was built for the high throughput and scalability that many data-driven applications require.\n\nAnd finally, you need a way to empower your developers to make the most of real-time data. You need an API layer that lets them build apps with freedom of choice and without operational distractions. Stargate, for example, is an open source data API layer that sits between applications and the database, and offers a variety of endpoints for developers to build with.\n\nWe\u2019ve thought a lot about these components at DataStax as we\u2019ve built the real-time open data stack that just works. When enterprises can activate data in real-time, customers keep coming back, the experience keeps improving, and more value is delivered, faster.\n\nLearn more about DataStax here.\n\nAbout Chet Kapoor:\n\nChet is Chairman and CEO of DataStax. He is a proven leader and innovator in the tech industry with more than 20 years in leadership at innovative software and cloud companies, including Google, IBM, BEA Systems, WebMethods, and NeXT. As Chairman and CEO of Apigee, he led company-wide initiatives to build Apigee into a leading technology provider for digital business. Google (Apigee) is the cross-cloud API management platform that operates in a multi- and hybrid-cloud world. Chet successfully took Apigee public before the company was acquired by Google in 2016. Chet earned his B.S. in engineering from Arizona State University.