We see countless articles discussing the elusive nature of big data as a term. This one from Computer World UK attempts a big picture view of everything big data in their recent article, "Big Data: Is It a Big Asset?" With the possibilities big data presents, it is no wonder a concise definition nears impossible.
IDC tells us that we are already past 1.8ZB, or as the article breaks it down: 1.6 trillion gigabytes. Even that number seems too mind boggling to imagine. Amongst the topics discussed related to this unstructured data deluge are how a variety of organizations can benefit from big data. Financial services, retail businesses, public sector, utilities and more can find insights and opportunities buried within the depths of data.
The article discusses how this is possible with a mix of datasets:
Some of this information is needed in real time, such as retail recommendations. Social information is challenging to integrate because of its unstructured format, while predictions based on social information need to take into account the incomplete nature of social information. Traditional transaction data was (and is) structured, whereas social information only tells simple stories and the analyst cannot draw inferences from anything that is not explicit.
Data integration will be key for organizations of any kind that try to tap the wealth from big data. We recommend checking out infrastructure solutions from PolySpot.
Megan Feil, August 9, 2012