Mazhar Hameed, Felix Naumann
We are happy to announce that our survey paper "Data Preparation: A Survey of Commercial Tools" by Mazhar Hameed and Felix Naumann was accepted at the SIGMOD Record Journal.
Raw data are often messy: they follow different encodings, records are not well structured, values do not adhere to patterns, etc. Such data are in general not fit to be ingested by downstream applications, such as data
analytics tools, or even by data management systems. The act of obtaining information from raw data relies on some data preparation process. Data preparation is integral to advanced data analysis and data management, not only for data science but for any data-driven applications. Existing data preparation tools are operational and useful, but there is still room for improvement and optimization. With increasing data volume and its messy nature, the demand for prepared data increases day by day. To cater to this demand, companies and researchers are developing techniques and tools for data preparation.
To better understand the available data preparation systems, we have conducted a survey to investigate (1) prominent data preparation tools, (2) distinctive tool features, (3) the need for preliminary data processing even for these tools and, (4) features and abilities that are still lacking. We conclude with an argument in support of automatic and intelligent data preparation beyond traditional and simplistic techniques.