The term “what is big data” seems to be one of the buzzwords of the past few years. As the phrase enters into everyday conversation, it invokes images of spider bots, palm trees, and the zapping of electronic sensors by aerial robots. Many people envision what they think are the potential applications for big data and how it will transform business and society.
What is big data is actually a concept that goes beyond “data visualization.” In order to understand what is big data, it’s important to consider how data has been used in the past. Companies and governments routinely use large quantities of data to track production, customer satisfaction, service, and to reduce costs, among other applications.
Companies with the technology and resources now available are using big data for a variety of purposes. Governments, for example, have been conducting public research for decades. But even before the advent of the Internet, the US government and other governments regularly compile massive amounts of data on public institutions, including the United States government. For some, the benefits of big data mining are clear: It allows them to make better decisions about public policy, national security, and foreign affairs.
There are, however, some downsides to what is big data. One of the biggest problems for companies using data to improve their business model is the law of unintended consequences. If the wrong conclusions are made about which information to mine, it can cost the company or government a lot of money and strain their intelligence gathering efforts. There are also concerns that the explosion of data may cause privacy issues for citizens, especially if individuals are allowed to obtain and review this information.
Fortunately, the US government and other governments have established policies to protect the privacy of citizens. Generally, the companies and governments that need to mine large troves of data will work with a consulting firm that does this on a need to know basis. The consulting firms will be charged for the cost of the data they gather and manage, along with the time it takes them to analyze the information. What is big data mining is not necessarily an easy question to answer.
Experts are quick to point out that what is big data is probably best left to private companies and for the intelligence community to decide how best to use big data analysis in its own interests. These experts argue that it is far too early to determine what is big data and how to use it. What is big data may change very quickly in the future. It is too soon to even speculate how government officials will use this new information to make informed decisions. Even with all of the technology currently available, this will be a dynamic science that will continue to grow and develop.
Researchers and developers are also concerned about what is big data mining. They are working diligently to collect, organize, analyze, and interpret this valuable data. Some people argue that private companies already use big data to provide products and services that consumers find more useful and interesting than what is available through government agencies and the government itself. What is big data mining? It is the ability for software to collect, organize, analyze, and interpret large amounts of complex data sets.
The possibilities are endless. There is no telling what will become important, what will fall out of favor, and what will be considered “trendy”. Big data mining has the potential to change the way that companies and governments function. It could very well spell the eventual demise of some methods of data collection, analysis, and reporting, and make the lives of consumers and businesses much easier.