In Short, It’s a Lot

Once and for all, what the heck is Big Data?

Imagine yourself waking up in an unending dream, as a new born baby with a brain that remembers everything that it encounters. What would become of you as you grow up? You keep the entire knowledge in your mind, about everything you ever did, everything you ever saw, every book you ever read, every phone number you ever dialed, every thought you ever had, and so on and so forth… In a way, by remembering all of that, you carry a biological version of the Google search engine within your own mind.

Now, the stuff inside such a brain is called data, and the entirety of that data is called the Big Data.

With such a volume of data in your mind, how would you live your life?

Very intelligently, of course.

You have every possible implication in your mind for your life’s everyday decisions, which will guide you better in tasks; you have answers for every circumstance you might encounter, which will comfort you for whatever situation is going to arise; above all, you will have all the necessary information in your mind, only a thought process away, which further helps you to correlate between various things and decide what to be your next move in every walk of life, which will put you ahead of many, in the world.

That is all possible through the process of analyses.

Where does this Data come from?

From you, from me and from almost everybody in the world right now. The tools that we have today to unconsciously create data are innumerable. Digital devices such as smart phones, computers, Ebook readers, and above all, the Internet, are some of the biggest sources of data production. The text we write on social networks such as Facebook, or Twitter, the photographs that we share there, the videos on YouTube and various kinds of other media that we download/upload onto the internet, these are all primarily data. Even our physical activities like purchasing goods or traveling places or watching movies, taking admissions in schools, or for that matter anything that we do — all this contribute to data production.

In a nutshell, every moment that we’re doing something or not doing something in this world, we’re creating data!

How does this help organizations improve their business?

In the above context, replace the mighty brainy version of yourself with an organization holding large datasets of information about anything and everything. All the advantages you’ve considered sometime ago would work similarly, or better, for such an organization and make it succeed grandly, flourishing its business.

Wouldn’t it be very helpful for a soap manufacturing company to have in handy a structured past records of customers’ seasonal soap usage and preferences!

Wouldn’t it be a catalyst for the malls to identify the shopping trends of people visiting them, and provide them with better and attractive offers, in order to make them come back!

In these and so and so other ways, having lots of information (data) and possessing tools to analyze that information will undoubtedly give the organization an edge over others in the market.

The field of business that deals with exactly such an analytical aspect is called Business Intelligence and the field of science those analytical processes adhere to is called Data Science.

So, all this data — information stored, the implications it is capable of having on whatever it is going to touch, and the profits that companies can make if they succeed in putting that data to proper use, all these are, in short, a lot!