Big Data does not mean «Big Data»

Nowadays everybody speaks about Big Data but only in very small cases this term is used correctly. Only because a few hundred thousand entries will be added to your database does not mean you are in the Big Data Business. Then you’d rather name it collecting «a lot of data». What defines Big Data are the 4 V’s.

  • Volume
    Every byte of data you collect is called as “Normal Data” until you collect a Petabyte every day
  • Variety
    How different is the incoming data. Image the stock exchange. They collect millions of data about transactions and changes every day but at the end its always the same information (stock title, price, change)
  • Velocity
    How often and how fast do you get new data
  • Veracity
    Collect useful data. Probably the most difficult part. You can collect millions of data every day but when these data do not help solving your problems they are just blocking memory.

A real big data challenge for example is a self-driving car. It collects different (Variety) data like video, audio, GPS, Speed and a lot of other inputs provided by different sensors. These are terabytes of data that are collected every hour (VolumeVelocity). A self-driving car needs then to calculate within milliseconds – based on the provided data (Veracity) – how to avoid an obstacle.

But this does not mean that all interesting question need Big Data. Read more about how we used Small Data to generate useful insights for STUcard.ch in our work section.

Kevin Kuhn
Smoothie addicted digital enthusiast with a flair for Algorithms and Digital Business. Managing Partner at Jaywalker Digital