Big data can be defined as extremely large data that increases with time. Big data collects data from disparate sources and the data is so complex that you cannot employ any traditional method or tool to manage such huge data.
Big data is not a data repository like data warehouse but it is a technology invented to manage an extremely large data. In this section, we will be discussing big data along with its importance. Further, we will discuss the types and benefits of big data so let’s start.
Content: Big Data
- What is Big Data?
- Why Big Data is Important?
- Types of Big Data
- Big Data Workflow
- Advantages of Big Data
- Key Takeaways
What is Big Data?
Big data is extremely large and complex data that is hard to manage using conventional data managing tools. Big data is a technology invented to manage and store large and complex data.
This large or huge amount of data incorporates both structured as well as unstructured data. If we observe almost 80% of big data is unstructured that include the entire web generated data i.e. through emails, websites and also the very trending social networking sites.
Storing large data, analyzing the data to retrieve useful information that helps in making intelligent decisions for business benefits has been practised for a long time. But the big data has gained attention in the early 2000s.
The concept of big data is structured around three Vs which are discussed below:
- Volume: You might remember the traditional method for storing the data was documenting every important thing and the company’s storeroom would have uncountable registers and file containing data relevant to the company.
Later when the digital storage came, storing data became easier and with every passing year, the cost of storage gets cheaper which led the user to store more and more data. This is the reason why the volume of data generated all over the world gets doubles in every 12 to 18 months.
We are familiar with gigabytes and terabytes storage size but the size of big data is measured in petabytes and exabytes.
Well, it is really difficult to search for useful information in such voluminous data within a sensible time. Big data implements an application to retrieve specific data in the world wide information and Google adopt this approach and implements many path-breaking big data technologies.
Big data records almost everything that is observed and this process is termed as ‘datafication’. Nowadays, computation and communication costs are also reduced which is also a reason for the increase in the volume of data.
- Velocity: The velocity of the big data can be compared to the speed of light. The source of big data are billions of devices that communicate over the internet. One does not have any control over the flow of the data.
The reason behind the increase in the velocity of big data is the internet. We all are aware of how internet speed has changed tremendously in the past few years. Where some years ago the speed of internet 1MB/s and now it is 1 GB/s and even more than this. The internet cost has also been reduced with the increase in its speed.
Today almost all homes, hotels and offices access this high-speed internet. The cheaper and faster internet has raised the sources of big data such as mobile phones which can generate and communicate data over the internet from anywhere in the world.
- Variety: The big data incorporates data from the disparate sources which led the collection of a variety of data. the variety can be classified into three main types:
The first classification of variety is the ‘form’ of data. We have already said that 80% of data is unstructured. The big data may be in the form of text, images, maps, audios, videos, graphs and many other forms. Well, the form we have defined are simple but they become complex when a single file includes many forms of data. For example, a single word file may have text, images, graphs embedded in it which make the form of data complex.
The second classification of variety is the ‘function’ of the data. The big data can form human conversation, movies, songs, the performance data from business etc. the big data technology can be implemented in recognizing speaker by the comparing two audio files and identify a person in a photograph etc.
The third classification of variety is the ‘source’ of data. The source of data could be from human to human conversation, or from human to machine conversation or from machine to machine conversation.
Apart from these three Vs, there are two more Vs we can talk about.
The variability of the data that means the flow of data is unpredictable and it keeps on changing. The veracity of the data which means the quality of data. The data is coming from disparate sources so it is hard to measure the quality aspect of the data. Every business has different measures to check and maintain the quality of data. In order to control the quality of data businesses must tally the relationship, linkages and hierarchy of the data.
Why Big Data is Important?
The importance of big data doesn’t depend on how big the data is but it depends on how do you manage it. If a company manages its data in an efficient way more are the chances of its potential growth.
Big data let you source the data from disparate sources and analyze it to get useful information that helps in reducing the cost and enhance the efficiency of the business operations. Big data uses high-speed tools such as Hadoop which are efficient in analyzing the big data quickly and there saves your time.
Big data analytics identify the need of the market and help in developing new products. It also helps in retrieving useful data to make intelligent decisions.
Types of Big Data
There are three kinds of big data structured, unstructured and semi-structured.
We can define the structured data as the well-organized data that lies in a fixed format. Think of the data organized in the relational table in the database.
Unstructured data is just opposite of the structured data which means the unstructured data neither well organized nor does it lie in any fixed format.
It is a combination of both structured as well as unstructured data. We can define the semi-structured data as the data that cannot be categorized under any repository but still, it has some important information which is useful.
What is Big Data Workflow
Till now we have studied the importance, and type of data possessed by the big data. Now, let us further discuss the big data workflow. Big data workflow has a series of activities such as collecting, integrating, managing, analyzing and decision making.
- Set a Strategy
Develop a strategy considering the exiting and future need of the business goals. The well-developed big data strategy will help you in acquiring, accessing and storing data inside the organization and even from outside the organization.
- Identify Sources
You need to identify the sources of data like you can collect data from the world wide internet, from the social media, publicly available data and of course from other big data.
- Access, Manage and Store
Once the data is collected you must seek for the high-speed tools that can collect, integrate, manage and store big data.
High-speed tools should be employed that can analyze the big data immediately
- Make Decisions
Well stored and well-analyzed data helps in making the intelligent decisions that are for the betterment of the company’s growth.
Advantages of Big Data
- Big data allow predictive analysis which helps in making business decisions which help in enhancing the growth of the company.
- Helps in understanding the customer need and thereby improving or introducing new products in the market satisfying customers needs and thereby staying competitive in the market.
- Big data analysis help in identifying any risk involved and help in evolving protective measures.
- Makes the business operations efficient.
- Big data is a huge amount of data collected from disparate sources.
- The big data concept totally depends on how do you utilize the data.
- Big data incorporates structured, unstructured and semi-structured data.
- Big data workflow starts from collecting, managing, analyzing to making decisions for business benefits.
The big data concept is too vast to cover in a single content yet we have tried to cover important points like big data types, big data workflow and big data importance.