Big data is a huge amount of information, often unsystematic, which is stored on some kind of digital stores. However, large amounts of data cannot be covered by the usual means of structuring and analytics. The term big data also means technologies of the search, processing and application of unstructured information in large volumes.
Until 2011, big data technologies were considered only as scientific analysis and had no practical application. However, data volumes were growing and the problem of huge arrays of unstructured and heterogeneous information became more and more relevant. Microsoft, IBM, Oracle, EMC and others actively joined in the development of the new direction.
Experts predict that in 2020 Big Data Systems will operate on 42-45 zettabytes of information.
Signs of the Big data information array are:
- Volume - data is measured by the physical quantity and occupied space on a digital medium (arrays over 150 GB per day).
- Speed, Velocity - information is regularly updated, and intelligent big data technologies are needed for real-time processing.
- Variety - information in arrays can have heterogeneous formats, be partially or completely structured and accumulate haphazardly.
- Variability - data streams can have peaks and dips, seasonality, periodicity. Bursts of unstructured information are difficult to manage and require powerful processing technologies.
- Data value (Value) - information can have different complexity for perception and processing, which complicates the work of intelligent systems. The task of machines is to determine the degree of importance of the incoming information and to structure it quickly.
The principle of operation of the big data technology is based on informing the user maximally about any subject or phenomenon in order to help make an informed, correct decision.
Big data sources include:
- blogs, social networks, sites, media and forums;
- archives, transactions, databases - corporate information;
- meteorological instruments, cellular sensors - readings of reading devices.
The principles of working with data sets include such factors:
- System extensibility. I.e. the volume of incoming data has grown - the capacity and number of servers for storing them have increased.
- Resistance to failure. One of the factors of stable work with big data is server fault tolerance.
- Localization. Separate sets of information are stored and processed within a single dedicated server in order to save time, resources, and data transmission costs.
Business development strategies, marketing events, advertising are based on the analysis and work with the available data. Thanks to large arrays, you can accurately adjust the direction of the brand, product, service, development.
So what are the benefits of big data for business?
- Creation of projects that are likely to become in demand among users, customers.
- Investigation and analysis of customer requirements with the existing company service.
- Identification of customer loyalty and dissatisfaction by analyzing a variety of information from blogs, social networks and other sources.
- Attracting and retaining the target audience through analytical work with large amounts of information.
Nowadays, the importance of understanding and working with arrays of information has increased significantly in comparison to the beginning of the decade. With widespread integration, big data came in the field of small and medium-sized businesses, startups:
- Cloud storage. The technology of storing and working with data in the online space allows us to solve a lot of problems of small and medium-sized businesses: it’s cheaper to buy a cloud than to maintain a data center, staff can work remotely.
- Deep learning, artificial intelligence. Analytical machines mimic the human brain, i.e. they use artificial neural networks. Training takes place independently on the basis of large amounts of information.
- Dark Data - the collection and storage of non-digitized data about the company, which do not have a significant role in business development, but they are necessary with regard to technical and legislative plans.
- Blockchain. Simplification of Internet transactions, reducing the cost of these operations.
- Self-service systems - special platforms are being introduced for small and medium-sized businesses, where you can independently store and organize data.
According to a report, The Data Age 2025, prepared by IDC analysts with Seagate support, by 2025 the global data volume will grow 10 times and reach 163 zettabytes, with most of the data being generated by enterprises, not consumers. Also, by 2025, enterprises will create about 60% of the world data (in 2015, this figure was less than 30%), while earlier, consumers were the ones who were creating the main data set.
But consumers will not stand aside. According to IDC's forecast, if now there is less than one piece of equipment with integrated data sources per person that feed the global information ecosystem, then in 10 years this figure will be increased.
Big data opens up new horizons in production planning, education, healthcare and other industries. Big data technologies take information as a production factor to a whole new level of quality. Currently, information is becoming not only equivalent to labor and capital, but also the most important resource of the modern economy.