With all of the recent developments in data storage and production, we now have access to an overwhelming variety of information abundant at an incredible speed, which is all only increasing by the second. Every moment, hundreds upon thousands of pages of information are created, adding novel information to a database already bursting at the seams. Big Data analytics, however, is more than just a breakdown of this enormous amount of information. We see big data everywhere, and it might not be as scary as it all sounds.
So, what is Big Data?
We see it all the time with giants of the data and tech industries: Facebook, Google, Amazon, and Twitter, just to name a few, all participate in Big Data systems. It’s about what the company know about its viewers, and then applying new methods to appeal to an audience through the adjusting of algorithms, making more informed choices, and customizing the experience. Big Data analytics takes into consideration all visitors a website racks in, observes tendencies and patterns, and then seeks to improve the systems based on viewer response. It allows for companies to get feedback from their viewers just from the way they interact with the company’s model, without even having to ask for the feedback. With Big Data, businesses can observe the trends of their viewers, which can help companies with understanding the needs of their audience.
What are the myths?
It is often perceived that Big Data is only utilized by large companies who have the finances to run such costly and ginormous systems. Because Big Data came into popularity through large industries, it might seem expensive and unattainable for the little guy, or even only necessary when handling the volume of information the giants hold. However, it is actually quite accessible to the masses. Big Data proves to be useful even with smaller businesses, and not even an outrageous financial burden. It is, however, not a requirement of all industries. As much as it helps some companies, there are still many others who do not need these analytics. Maybe it seems like everyone is doing it, but it doesn’t mean everyone needs it.
Another concern people often have is with Big Data’s potential for the invasion of privacy. It’s sort of like that moment where you are searching for rubber ducks on Amazon and Facebook suddenly displays an ad about rubber ducks for you moments later. Seems freaky sometimes, right? The thing is, big data is primarily looking to guide and improve your online experience, and is not interested in collecting data from you if it is not aiding in a company’s business model.
What do we need to know going forward?
The term “Big Data” is still constantly evolving. The reason there are so many myths is because an abundance of them may have been true at some point, but the term is so amorphous that it’s hard to keep up. So what will it mean tomorrow? We’re not sure yet, but we’ll be watching the patterns for sure.