Sir – All of the hype and references to big data are great as it gives us something new to talk about, but is it all that it’s cracked up to be?
Sure, there is more data. Social media platforms create loads of data but so what? I’ve looked at Twitter and tried to make sense of tweets, work out sentiment and turn 140 characters of Twitter-speak into useful, insightful information. Facebook… you’re having a laugh (a sponsored laugh these days).
We all get sucked in by the hype and the rhetoric.
Today is more about ‘now’. Getting the information you need about your business, your customers, and your staff when you want it and without having to go to someone to get it.
I’m in the big data arena. We have software that is fundamentally geared around scale and performance, but it’s not big data we are promoting, it’s self-service and ease of use. In today’s society, size is irrelevant… it’s relevance that’s relevant.
The old-fashioned data warehouse, staging areas, cubes and so on are no longer in vogue. Everything these days is ‘search’ for something and you’ll find it in seconds. However, search is ‘throw away the old’’ and do things in a completely different way.
Google has been revolutionary. Google is a gargantuan warehouse with the easiest to use interface you could possibly come up with… genius.
Big data is a general realisation that there is so much more data than what you collect in your back-office systems that might be useful, but even with the likes of Hadoop to persist that information in an accessible repository, what is the true value of this data and how do we get that value?
I find the hype around big data and the promotion of technologies that require dozens of servers, armies of techies and even then professors of programming to get at the data a bit of a scam.
At the end of the day, it’s about value for money, efficiency, customer satisfaction and self-improvement so it’s not size that matters, it’s being able to zero in on the facts and finding the information that matters.
Big data is noise. I am concentrating on finding out the facts and masking out the noise. But ever mindful that the noise might get louder, I’m equipping myself with the tools to adjust the volume when I need to.
Managing Director, Clearview Systems