What is Big Data?

First of let’s start off by defining what is the term “Big Data”? Big Data has truly come of age in 2013 when Oxford English Dictionary introduced the term “Big Data” for the first time in its dictionary REF1. The term refers to the data that we transmit to the internet Like social media, healthcare sector financial, etc. The question here How big is this data? According to the MicroFocus REF2 each minute every day the following data is being generated :

  • 4.3 BILLION Facebook messages posted daily!
  • 5.75 BILLION Facebook likes every day.
  • 22 billion texts are sent every day.
  • 5.2 BILLION daily Google Searches in 2017.
  • Instagram users upload 46,740 million posts every minute!
  • Youtube usage more than tripled from 2014-2016 with users uploading 400 hours of new video each minute of every day! Now, in 2017, users are watching 4,146,600 videos every minute.

So three characteristics that form the big data it is called the three V :

  • Volume: Represent the amount of data
  • Velocity: Speed of the data stream
  • Variety: The different types of data

But the question is how is this data being stored? Basically big data comes in 3 forms :

  • Structured: Which comes in form of a Database or Data Warehouse. This form of data is being stored using some special software for storing Structured Data Like Oracle • MySQL • PostgreSQL• MsSQL
  • Semi-Structured: These forms of data are represented in XML or even emails. This data is stored in XML or JSON format.
  • Unstructured: These data are the data on the internet that are not structured or archived Like GPS data, data collected from social media, and more. MongoDB, Cassandra, Neo4j, and Redis are NoSQL software to store Unstructured Data.

Big Data represented into two types

  • Data in movement: Twitter, Facebook comment, and more.
  • Data at rest: Email logs, Forms, and anything that is being stored.

How can we use these data to improve our life? How does it affect our future In this document we will discuss 3 applications the Big Data that could affect and improve our lives. We start off with :


A fitness tracker or any bracelet equipped with a heartbeat or movement sensor. Using the data transmitted by the bracelet we can tell if the person is healthy, active, or even lazy. We can understand his/her active hour or if he/she even had enough sleep. Furthermore, with enough heartbeat data, we can even predicate if he/she has any medical problem in the near future.

Online Shopping 

Big Data is also being used in online shopping to help the system suggest you a product or even make a discount for loyal customers. This will have a big impact on the customer experience since the customer will get what he/she prefers displayed dynamically for him/her. This will result in the customer spending more money on stuff they want and like. Keeping in mind using the big data we collect we can reward the loyal customers by giving them, For Example, limited-time discount and offering them bundles specially made for them using previously collected data.

City Infrastructure

Smart cities heavily depend on big data and recent analysis to ensure smooth and precise prediction. For example, predicting the traffic so you adjust the plane schedule or adjust public transportation plan for better efficiency. Also, we can use it for better estimation time for reaching a specific destination. Furthermore, it helps the Police and Tow companies to predict the rate of accidents So the city can get ready for it to reduce the dispatch time which will result to save lives. The applications will go on.

But with the benefits comes security concerns. 

One of the big disadvantages of big data is security. Security breaches are a big concern these days. Hence paying enough attention and investing enough in security is so essential So we can benefit from big data without affecting our life negatively since these data sometimes could be so sensitive.   

  In conclusion, Big Data is definitely affecting the future of our life and evolving the technology we use at a fast pace in a beneficial way. In my opinion, we will see more companies adopting the idea of investing in Big Data applications when there is enough support for it in a way that companies can start profiting from it. Basically, in the current future, it is really expensive and costly to start changing the current companies to adopt the idea of big data and deploy its applications. Hence it is easier for new companies to build upon it. Moreover, we need to keep in mind the security risk the companies have to take in storing and maintaining the data which is a big trust issue, and the very sensitive role the companies have to play.

REF1 https://www.kdnuggets.com/2017/02/origins-big-data.html

REF2 https://blog.microfocus.com/how-much-data-is-created-on-the-internet-each-day/