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As the new year begins, global companies face the coming year's most prominent IT and business challenge: Big Data. The focus for IT will be to provide high performance analytics capabilities at the lowest cost, as business users need to tap into volumes of multi-structured data about their customers and markets to gain competitive advantage. RainStor, a provider of Big Data management software, has released five predictions focused on how enterprise Big Data will affect organizations in 2012. Based on client and partner experience, market research and conversations with industry experts, here are RainStor's five predictions for Big Data in 2012: Prediction #1: Big Data will Transition from Technology "Buzz" to a Real Business Challenge Affecting Many Large Global Enterprises Big Data is largely centered on leveraging the open source Apache Hadoop analytics platform... (more)

Cloud Computing and Big Data in 2013: What's Coming Next?

What changes in the cloud computing and big data landscape should we be expecting in 2013? In this article we offer a round-up of industry experts' opinions as they were asked by Cloud Expo / BigDataExpo Conference Chair Jeremy Geelan to preview the fast-approaching year ahead. 2013 Will Be The Year of Big Data  | The Internet of Things | Cloud To The Rescue (DR) | SSD John Engates | @jengates CTO of Rackspace Hosting Now its CTO, John joined Rackspace in August 2000, just a year after the company was founded, as VP of Operations, managing the datacenter operations and customer-service teams. Two years later, when Rackspace decided to add new services for larger enterprise customers, he created and helped develop the Intensive Hosting business unit. Most recently, he has played an active role in the evolution and evangelism of Rackspace's cloud computing strategy an... (more)

Introducing Big Data

The phrase “Big Data” is thrown around a lot these days. What exactly is referred to by this phrase? When I was part of IBM’s DB2 development team, the largest size limit of a DB2 Table was 64 Gigabytes (GB) and I thought who on earth can use this size of a database. Thirty years later, that number looks so small. Now you can buy a 1 Terabyte external drive for less than $100. Let us start with a level set on the unit of storage. In multiples of 1000, we go from Byte – Kilobyte (KB) – Megabyte (MB) – Gigabyte (GB) – Terabyte (TB) – Petabyte (PB) – Exabyte (EB) – Zettabyte (ZB) – Yottabyte (YB). The last one YB is 10 to the power of 24. A typed page is 2KB. The entire book collection at the US Library of Congress is 15TB. The amount of data processed in one hour at Google is 1PB. The total amount of information in existence is around 1.27ZB. Now you get some context... (more)

Is Big Data a Solution in Search of a Problem?

If you look at the predictions made for 2012, you will find a new entry which was not there last year. Be it Gartner, Forrester or McKenzie – “Big Data” finds a place in the prediction. So, what is big data? Is it the next path breaking technology which will change everything or is it just a hype which will die down after sometime? Let us take a realistic look at what the term big data mean and what problem it can solve. What is "Big Data"? (The Wikipedia page on Big Data is not that good. The clearest explanation I have found is from O’Reilly Radar – here is the link) Here is a short explanation. Big Data is the name given to the classes of technologies that needs to be used when your data volume becomes so much that the RDBMS technologies can no longer handle it. Big data spans three dimensions (taken from this article of IBM): Variety – Big data extends beyond st... (more)

Examining the True Cost of Big Data

The good news about the Big Data market is that we generally all agree on the definition of Big Data, which has come to be known as data that has volume, velocity and variety where businesses need to collect, store, manage and analyze in order to derive business value or otherwise known as the "4 V's." However, the problem with such a broad definition is that it can mean different things to different people once you start to put some real values next to those V's. Let's be honest, Volume can be a different thing to different organizations. To some it is anything above 10 terabytes of managed data in their BI environment and to others it is petabyte scale and nothing less. Likewise velocity can be multi-billions of daily records coming into the enterprise from various external and internal networks. When it really comes down to it, each business situation will be qu... (more)

The Human Face of Big Data, a Book Review

My copy of the new book The Human Face of Big Data created by Rick Smolan and Jennifer Erwitt arrived yesterday compliments of EMC (the lead sponsor). In addition to EMC, the other sponsors of the book are Cisco, VMware, FedEx, Originate and Tableau software. To say this is a big book would be an understatement, then again, big data is a big topic with a lot of diversity if you open your eyes and think in a pragmatic way, which once you open and see the pages you will see. This is physically a big book (11x 14 inches) with lots of pictures, texts, stories, factoids and thought stimulating information of the many facets and dimensions of big data across 224 pages. While Big Data as a buzzword and industry topic theme might be new, along with some of the related technologies, techniques and focus areas, other as aspects have been around for some time. Big data means ... (more)

Using Big Data for Competitive Advantage

Big data capabilities and advanced business analytics have now become essential to nearly any business development activity. The benefits that enterprises can get if they can get their hands around big data analytics and apply it to business challenges are quickly being documented -- and they come as big new profits and major market advantages. Industries around the world are rapidly seeking transformational projects using big data to gain competitive advantage. As part of the next edition of the HP Big Data Podcast Series, BriefingsDirect sat down with two HP executives to learn how these advanced analytics seekers can best accomplish their goals. The insights gleaned include how companies worldwide are best capturing myriad knowledge, gaining ever deeper analysis, and rapidly and securely making those insights available to more people on their own terms. So join ... (more)

Internet of Things, Fast Data vs. Big Data

Back when we were doing DB2 at IBM, there was an important older product called IMS which brought significant revenue. With another database product coming (based on relational technology), IBM did not want any cannibalization of the existing revenue stream. Hence we coined the phrase “dual database strategy” to justify the need for both DBMS products. In a similar vain, several vendors are concocting all kinds of terms and strategies to justify newer products under the banner of Big Data. One such phrase is Fast Data. We all know the 3Vs associated with the term Big Data – volume, velocity and variety. It is the middle V (velocity) that says data is not static, but is changing fast, like stock market data, satellite feeds, even sensor data coming from smart meters or an aircraft engine. The question always has been how to deal with such type of changing data (as ... (more)

Employment Network Uses Big Data By @Dana_Gardner | @BigDataExpo #BigData

Employment Network Uses Big Data to Chart System Performance The next BriefingsDirect analytics innovation case study interview explores how Snagajob in Richmond, Virginia – one of the largest hourly employment networks for job seekers and employers – uses big data to finally understand their systems' performance in action. The result is vast improvement in how they provide rapid and richer services to their customers. Snagajob recently delivered 4 million new jobs applications in a single month through their systems. To learn how they're managing such impressive scale, BriefingsDirect sat down with Robert Fehrmann, Data Architect at Snagajob in Richmond, Virginia. The discussion is moderated by me, Dana Gardner, Principal Analyst at Interarbor Solutions. Here are some excerpts: Gardner: Tell us about your jobs matching organization. You’ve been doing this successfu... (more)

The Increasing Value of Big Data Analytics By @Dana_Gardner | @BigDataExpo #BigData

The next BriefingsDirect big data innovation case study interview highlights how Rolta AdvizeX in Independence, Ohio creates analytics-driven solutions in the healthcare and retail industries. We'll also delve into how the right balance between open-source and commercial IT products helps in creating a big-data capability, and we'll further explore how converged infrastructure solutions are hastening the path to big-data business value and cloud deployment options. To learn more about how big data can be harnessed for analysis benefits in healthcare and retail, please join me in welcoming our guests, Dennis Faucher, Enterprise Architect at Rolta AdvizeX, and Raajan Narayanan, Data Scientist at Rolta AdvizeX. The discussion is moderated by me, Dana Gardner, Principal Analyst at Interarbor Solutions. Here are some excerpts: Gardner: Dennis, what makes big data so bene... (more)

Infochimps Shares the Secrets of Big Data Success

AUSTIN, Texas, May 22, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Big Data cloud service provider Infochimps (Infochimps.com) announced today the release of "How to Do a Big Data Project," a step by step guide for large enterprises implementing Big Data projects. Recent research by Infochimps has shown that nearly half of all Big Data projects fail. With this new guide, now available for download, the company hopes to improve this success rate. Infochimps is offering insight into some of its own best practices for deriving business value from Big Data with an open-standards architecture and strategy, which it has honed working with some of the world's top companies. Big Data: Boon and Bane of Enterprise IT As Big Data sweeps the business world, there's broad consensus on its value, but no standard approach for following a project through from inception to completion. Research has shown th... (more)