Explaining Big Data Mythology
May 14, 2015
Mythologies usually develop over a course of centuries, but big data has only been around for (arguably) a couple decades—at least in the modern incarnate. Recently big data has received a lot of media attention and product development, which was enough to give the Internet time to create a big data mythology. The Globe and Mail wanted to dispel some of the bigger myths in the article, “Unearthing Big Myths About Big Data.”
The article focuses on Prof. Joerg Niessing’s big data expertise and how he explains the truth behind many of the biggest big data myths. One of the biggest items that Niessing wants people to understand is that gathering data does not equal dollar signs, you have to be active with data:
“You must take control, starting with developing a strategic outlook in which you will determine how to use the data at your disposal effectively. “That’s where a lot of companies struggle. They do not have a strategic approach. They don’t understand what they want to learn and get lost in the data,” he said in an interview. So before rushing into data mining, step back and figure out which customer segments and what aspects of their behavior you most want to learn about.”
Niessing says that big data is not really big, but made up of many diverse, data points. Big data also does not have all the answers, instead it provides ambiguous results that need to be interpreted. Have questions you want to be answered before gathering data. Also all of the data returned is not the greatest. Some of it is actually garbage, so it cannot be usable for a project. Several other myths are uncovered, but the truth remains that having a strategic big data plan in place is the best way to make the most of big data.
Whitney Grace, May 14, 2015