Big Data is Useless

In an age where everyone publishes and creates information, passively or actively – Big Data exists, and it does so whether we want it to or not, and whether companies invest in it or not. Everything we do online and some of the stuff we don’t, whether we are aware of it or not, creates data. Our searches, our emails, our calls, our transactions, even smart devices create data about what we do, say and think without us even being aware of it.

Big data as a buzz word has been thrown around for some time. Very dryly, it refers to the volume, variety, velocity and complexity of a dataset and the ability to manage that data, all of which changes according to technology and what we find manageable at any given time period. The real value lies not in big data but analytics.

Without the ability to collect, manage and generate meaningful insights from that data – big data remains useless.

If you will indulge a possibly ridiculous metaphor; think for a moment of big data as a desert and imagine we were able to sort through each individual grain of sand and by looking at these grains individually and together, how they interact and what they do, we are able to understand why the desert does what it does and what it will do next.

All of these grains of sand together are what we call big data. The intelligence to sort through the desert and understand how and why – that is analytics.

With analytics “Big Data” shifts from an unmanageable resource, to an asset that allows us to transform communications, government, sport, healthcare, infrastructure and much more. It is the universal crystal ball upon which all future decisions rest – it reduces the margin for error and allows for real time adjustments, it is what is driving future technologies and the betterment of existing utility, such as perceptive media and the internet of things.

The increasing importance and impact of analytics on the world is undeniable. The only question that remains is: how have you scaled for analytics and the rise of perceptive business?


Written by Jared Carneson