Big Data, that wonderful perpetual geyser of information that can tell you everything you need to know about everything, has great potential as a business tool when it’s put to the right use. But in order to use it correctly, you need the right tools to help you take that gusher of data and turn it into smaller, immediately useful resources. Figuratively speaking, you need a set of drinking glasses to help you quench your thirst at the geyser, because if you try to just stick your head in it and drink, you’ll probably drown, if not get your head knocked clean off.
That’s why Big Data applications (BDAs) are so important. BDAs are those drinking glasses of which we speak. Here’s how you can make sure that you get the most out of those apps, and make Big Data work for you. Once you finish with this, take a look at “How Do You Get The Most Out Of Big Data“ for further details.
Big Data Applications Defined
First, a quick definition. Big Data Applications are web-based applications that take huge volumes of enterprise and web-scale data and turn it into something that is usable by businesses. Examples of BDAs include Salesforce, LinkedIn, BloomReach, Roambi, Cloudera Enterprise, and Bazaarvoice.
In order to get the most out of Big Data apps, you need to …
Know Who Is Seeing What
You have to be able to keep track of who in your company is accessing what data, when they are doing it, and what apps they are using. Security is a big issue for Big Data, and having a means of accounting for usage is an important part in ensuring data integrity. This is especially important as concerns over privacy continue to dominate the news.
Make Sure Your Apps Can Grow
One common piece of wisdom in handling Big Data is to start out very small, perhaps focusing on just search results, website hits, or demographic information. But the ultimate goal is to build on that, taking literally bigger bites out of Big Data. In order to effectively do this, your Big Data apps need to be able to handle those increasingly larger workloads. In other words, your apps need scalability, so that they can grow along with your business.
Ensure Future Compatibility
It’s not just the size of the tasks that’s important, it’s the increasing sophistication of the technology behind the data and its apps. Computers, data, and telecommunications have advanced exponentially in the past 50 years, and there’s no reason to think this will slow down anytime soon. That’s why it’s important that your Big Data apps can work on all kinds of platforms either seamlessly or with a minimal of adjustment. Tomorrow’s next big thing will someday become yesterday’s news.
These steps are enough to get you started on the road to getting the most out of your Big Data. For more insights into how to employ Big Data in your company’s operations, read “How Do You Use Big Data In Your Small Business?“.
Photo Credit: kugel
Kimberley Laws is a regular contributor to HowDoYou.com and the author of two blogs, The Embiggens Project and Searching for Barry Weiss. A "Jill of all trades," she is a High School English Teacher and Certified Career Counselor with a background in makeup artistry, retail banking, and graphic design. She is also a scrapbooking, PEZ-collecting, car enthusiast who loves travelling and New York City.
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