It is not every day that scientist coin a name that so simply defines the object but John Mashey was determined to make this possible this time. Big data refers to enormously large set of data that can reveal patterns, trends as well as associations when analyzed using the proper computational methods. The most interesting aspect is that it is often generated as a by-product of digital interactions rather than being collated with a set purpose. Data Science tracks data in real time and draws through the process of data fusion without requiring prior reasoning.
In order to know more, we need to understand the characteristics of Big Data, more commonly known as the three Vs.
Data is the new currency.
Agreed but for stacks of paper currency to be usable, it needs to backed by gold reserves. The same way a set of Big Data, to have value requires technology and inductive statistics. However, it is both inconsistent and veracious which makes management difficult and analysis inaccurate.
How to then add value to it?
In order to uncover hidden relationships or dependencies between the data sets or predict outcomes using those data sets, big technologies have to be used to analyze data such as A/B testing, machine learning and natural language processing. Big words like business intelligence, cloud computing and database management are often hurled at people with the mentions of Big Data.
That sounds complicated….
Perhaps, yes. However it also uses visualization to get across the message, such as graphs, charts etc.
How to use Big Data?
Everyday 2.5 Exabyte of data is generated, for a layman it should be somewhere around 1 billion GB.
For everyone to realize how much data that is, they should probably check how much there is in their external storage. Most people find 1 TB more than enough for all of their needs including work, entertainment and storage. Now imagine 1000 million such 1 TB external drives, all connected to one device and all at once. Of course, there are trouble acquiring, storing and transferring Big Data but the potential is great.
Several sectors can use Business Intelligence tech to contribute to the profitability of the business as well as the industry. Big Data can be used in manufacturing for supply planning and quality management while it can give healthcare the required boost to personalize medicine. It also plays a significant role in Education, Real Estate, Media, Banking, information Technology etc. It goes without saying that consumer data and scrutiny of the same can give any business valuable insights that can help them plan and execute better.
It would also change how researches are looked at and even done. Another way Big Data is helping is through Hadoop.
What is Hadoop?
It is an open source software framework which uses MapReduce programming model. Hadoop is really useful for storage and processing of Big Data set. It circulates around the assumption that hardware is bound to fail at some point of time. It assists in scheduling and is used by industry veterans like Yahoo and Facebook.
Applications of Hadoop include;
- machine learning
- marketing analytics
- clickstream analysis
- image processing
- processing of XML messages
- web crawling
- general archiving
It is also a coveted skill to be able to analyze Big Data and come up with sensible useful results.