Big Data : The Next Frontier for Innovation, Competition and Productivity

McKinsey Global Institute published a very interesting report about the potential value that Big Data can create for organizations and sectors. The report seeks also to illustrate and quantify that value.
McKinsey has identified five applicable ways to leverage big data that offer transformational potential to create value :
  • Create Transparency by making big data more easily accessible to relevant stakeholders ;
  • Improve performance : collect more accurate and detailed performance data on everything (products, customers, ...) ;
  • Create specific segmentations in order to customize appropriate actions ;
  • Support human decisions using sophisticated analytics and automated algorithms :
  • Innovate : Big data enables companies to create new products and services, or enhace existing ones.

About Big Data

Big data are datasets that grow so large that they become awkward to work with using on-hand database management tools. Difficulties include capture, storage, search, sharing, analytics, and visualizing. This trend continues because of the benefits of working with larger and larger datasets allowing analysts to "spot business trends, prevent diseases, combat crime." Though a moving target, current limits are on the order of terabytes, exaytes, and zettabytes od data. Scientists regularly encounter this problem in meterology, genomics, complex physics simulations, biological and environmental research, Internet search, finance and business informatics. Data sets also grow in size because they are increasingly being gathered by ubiquitous information-sensing mobile devices, aerial sensory technologies software logs, cameras, microphones, RFID readers, wireless sensor networks and so on.

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