Technology, Big Data

Is Big Data Ousting Cloud Computing as this Year’s Buzzword?

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Big data has been such a hot topic lately that it seems to be battling cloud computing as the buzzword of the year. A recent article in ITBusinessEdge, titled Just the Stats: Big Numbers About Big Data, provides some thought provoking information about the use of Information Optimization in the retail and healthcare industries, as well as in business in general.

There are more possibilities than just the traditional perspective of the data itself. With all the computing capabilities available today, much more can be done with the abundance of data and computing. Opportunities exist in nearly every industry, both for static data as well as understanding the implications of data on the move or turning data into the context needed to make decisions.

The speed and motion characteristics of data generation and transportation can be just as meaningful as the data payload itself. One of the places this is most evident today is in the social networking space. But within business, similar metadata possibilities exist:

  • · Who is interested?
  • · Who is not interested?
  • · What are they planning to do with the data?

The answers to these questions provide insight into the appetite of the organization – just like the derivative in mathematics is more meaningful for certain situations, predicting where objects will be.

Another very powerful aspect is the relationship of the data to other data:

  • · What data collected at the same time?
  • · What can be derived from the relationship between the data?
  • · What is the shape of the data payload?

We can analyze these new data and relationships in ways that were just not possible before. This is one of the ways stock market manipulation is identified – by looking at the relationships between transactions.

Finally, we can merge corporate data with data from other sources, like (which just turned two-years-old) and other large public data sets for analysis, in addition to internal systems that may have never had their data cross-pollinated. We now have the computing and bandwidth capabilities, it is just our imaginations that are limited.

How are you using your company’s data? What computing capabilities are you using to analyze data and what challenges have you come across?

Check out these HP resources on making your data work for you:

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Richard Semmes 0 Points | Wed, 11/30/2011 - 12:51

Cloud is a means to an end whereas Big Data presents the opportunity to increase your Intellectual Property and Knowledge Capital.

Big Data presents a huge, competitive opportunity from any companies but like all opportunities, we are going to have to figure out how take advantage.  Those leading the way to harness the potential of Big Data realize that new technologies are needed due to the volume of information and its lack of structure.  There is a reason all the talk around Big Data coincides with increased buzz about Hadoop and search-based technologies.  While surgical steel is perfect for a scapel, you can't chip concrete with a sharp, thin blade.

Big Data is out there and getting bigger by the second.  There are companies that are actually gaining competitve advantage by leveraging Big Data but they are embracing new technologies to make the right information readily accessible.  They are not trying to fit everything in a traditional IT environment.

John Dodge 1535 Points | Wed, 11/30/2011 - 21:35

I know there's a lot of business intelligence and analytics tools out there, but are there specifically Big Data tools that can comb through unstructured data like Tweets, e-mail and Facebook wall posts? And tools that mere mortals can use.....

Todd Berger 3 Points | Tue, 11/08/2011 - 18:02

Big Data is getting lots and lots of attention. More so than ever. Is it replacing cloud computing as this years buzzword? Not quite. For example, on Wikipedia, Cloud Computing, has had 454,890 page views over the last 30 days, compared to Big Data which has had 19,325 page views over the same 30 days. A year ago, it was around 2,000!!!

Surprising, how few people really understand what Big Data is and why its important. Moreover, people still don't know how to go about deriving value from Big Data for, for example, competitive growth, or research.

Big Data is not only data growing in size but also in generating Buzz--no doubt. Ask this question again in 6 months and you could quite possibly have a completely different answer.

John Dodge 1535 Points | Tue, 11/08/2011 - 20:38

Indeed, Todd. I am surprised that the cloud computing Wiki got only 455k views in the past 30 days. In some respects, that reflects what Paul Muller and I am been talking about in another conversation thread - that cloud is largely transparent to end users (although I hear end users talking about it).

Here's that conversation...



Bill Laberis 161 Points | Fri, 10/07/2011 - 19:44

As a buzzword, quite possibly yes. But for practical purposes, it is going to take a long time for CIOs to really come to grips with Big Data, conceptually and in practice, whereas cloud and its directions and benefits are universally understood. When I think of Big Data I think of analytics and unstructured files and semi-structured files and social media and a host of other confusing things. But I am also coming to realize Big Data is looming as a major if not central challenge to IT because some companies are going to start figuring it out ahead of others. And if as a result they move ahead of competitors - perhaps by doing a better job of analyzing YouTube videos for example - then the Big Data fever will spread.

John Dodge 1535 Points | Mon, 10/10/2011 - 15:05

What's interesting is that Big Data is like an expanding universe. Unstructured data is just getting more massive, complex and random...hence more difficult to harness and use productively. And much of Big Data is in the cloud. So I see the cloud and Big Data as tighly-coupled and interdependent.       

Christian Verstraete 429 Points | Wed, 09/28/2011 - 08:09

This might actually be positive for Cloud. Can we finally get beyond the hype in cloud, maybe by talking a little less about it, but just doing it. Can it finally become an approach to IT that makes sense, that is proven? Can the dust finally settle?

Paul Calento 255 Points | Tue, 09/27/2011 - 17:19

Two questions:

1.) What role can the cloud play in managing "big data"?

2.) What (Instant-On ?) processes can be used to make sure that the data being looked at is "good data" and that they are being acted on?

Issue isn't solely about technology, but using the technology?

--Paul Calento

(note: I work on projects sponsored by and HP)

Pearl Zhu 90 Points | Mon, 09/26/2011 - 17:01

yes, big data, big challenges and opportunities, big data and cloud are more about interdepent relationship, majority of unstrustured data comes from cloud (social app, mobile app., etc), also provides significant opportunies for SAAS, such as Analytics as a Service, it's just new DNA of digital era. thanks