Machine Learning Times
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11 years ago
Big Data, Plus Cloud: Call It ‘Weird Data,’ But in a Good Way


We have the cloud, we have big data, we have social networks and we have mobile computing. The sum total is more than the parts; it’s amounting to a big data cloud that is surrounding and defining businesses of all types and sizes, providing interesting opportunities for those who engage it.

That’s the gist of a recent panel, hosted at BusinessNext, which explored what the implications of the big data cloud on today’s organizations. The panel was moderated by Michael Krigsman, enterprise market strategist, who was joined by well-known tech pundit Robert Scoble and Vala Afshar, chief marketing officer/chief customer officer at Enterasys. (YouTube video posted below.)

Citing the rapid pace of new innovations — thanks to the convergence of cloud, big data, mobile and social — Scoble points out that he never liked the term “big data,” preferring to refer to it as “weird data.”  As he noted, “the number of databases is going up exponentially. It’s ‘weird data’ because there are new database technologies coming out every month lately to let people build new kinds of systems.”

For example, there are online services and apps coming on the market that are delivering “highly personalized and highly predictive products,” Scoble says. Google Now, for example, is a feature available on Android phones that “tells you you’re next meeting is an hour and its across town and you better leave right now traffic is getting bad,” he illustrates. The intelligence comes from integrating emails and personal calendars with online information such as weather and traffic reports.

The advantages of the big data cloud aren’t just limited to consumers, Scoble continues:

“On the enterprise side, this means an enterprise has a perfect view of what their business is right now. You get to see every truck at FedEx, every customer, every financial transaction — in real time, on a cell phone. As an executive, you have perfect knowledge of what your business is doing, and you have increasingly  perfect knowledge of who your customer is and what drove them in your virtual front door.”

Within a couple of years, every every product is going to have algorithmic customer support, Scoble adds. Starting with very big products. “General Motors, they are seeing a world where your car is going to be highly personalized. You’re going to walk in with your phone, and it’s going to know who you are, where your next meeting is. It’s going to do things to serve you to make your life better.”

By: Joe McKendrick
I am an author and independent researcher, covering innovation, information technology trends and markets. I also can be found speaking (and listening!) at business IT, cloud and SOA industry events and Webcasts. I am also a co-author of the SOA Manifesto, which outlines the values and guiding principles of service orientation in business and IT. Much of my research work is in conjunction with Unisphere Research/ Information Today, Inc. for user groups including SHARE, Oracle Applications Users Group, Independent Oracle Users Group and International DB2 Users Group. I am also a contributor to CBS interactive, authoring the ZDNet “Service Oriented” site, and CBS interactive’s SmartPlanet site. In a previous life, I served as communications and research manager of the Administrative Management Society (AMS), an international professional association dedicated to advancing knowledge within the IT and business management fields. I am a graduate of Temple University.

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