One of the most popular terms that seems to be popping up on every technology site nowadays is big data. I think the industry is doing a disservice with its overuse and the inaccurate picture it depicts of what’s really happening.
Big data is a buzzword, or catch-phrase, used to describe a massive volume of both structured and unstructured data that is so large that it’s difficult to process using traditional database and software techniques. According to Webopedia
The problem is that big data is not just a big database. Big data is basically a 2-dimensional description. The problem is that companies are not just battling large databases, they’re battling the velocity of the data. Giant streams of data are coming in real-time that have to be normalized and presented in a way that provides an analysis of what’s occurring over time.
I believe a more accurate depiction might be streaming data. Streaming data has both the promise of finding nuggets of information that marketers can capitalize on, as well as real-time, trending and predictive analysis that can provide marketers with opportunities to adjust their strategy to maximize results. Systems have to normalize, archive, present and predict for us to truly capitalize on the massive data streams that are available.
Don’t be fooled by the marketing speak surrounding big data. The solutions are already present to process massive volumes of data. Tapping streaming data is what we’re really in need of.