Big data ain't getting any smaller, but analytics startup Metanautix has been helping large firms manage all of that information much more effectively and efficiently. That caught Microsoft's attention.

Microsoft has acquired Metanautix but declined to disclose how much it paid. In the months ahead, Microsoft plans to share more about what it intends to do with Metanautix. But for now, here's what you need to know about Metanautix and the Microsoft deal.

Quest

Beneath the carpeting and below the boards is Metanautix' foundation, Quest. 

The Quest platform treats data from public cloud, private cloud, hybrid cloud and any other digital data stores as a single set of data. And it takes its SQL queries to the data, rather than requesting it be delivered somewhere. 
For companies with data on and off campus, and in several location around their organizations, Quest provides an agile answer reining it all in to something that can be visualized and acted on.

The key to the company's approach with Quest is the platform's ability to make various formats of data support its SQL queries, says Joseph Sirosh, corporate vice president of Microsoft's Data Group.

"As someone who has led complex, large scale data warehousing projects myself, I am extremely excited about the technology and talent we are bringing to Microsoft with this acquisition," Sirosh says. "It is another important part of our ongoing efforts to build the intelligent cloud and help our customers fully realize the value of their data."

Metanautix

That Quest platform attracted $7 million in funding for Metanautix, which was founded in 2012 and it launched out of stealth mode last year. It was founded by Apostolos Lerios, formerly a senior software engineer for Facebook, and Theo Vassilakis, who led development of Google's Dremel ad-hoc query system.

"Three years in, we can take this work to the next level by joining forces with Microsoft," says Vassilakis. "We look forward to being part of Microsoft's important efforts with Azure and SQL Server to give enterprise customers a unified view of all of their data across cloud and on-premises systems." 

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