Big Data's Effects on BI Efforts in the Cloud

Big Data is a phenomenon that is created by the ubiquity of transactions and devices that generate digital information in our society today. It is not just databases or data views created from large data stores. Globally, individuals generate a multitude of tweets, LinkedIn postings, Foursquare location data, Instagram images, and many other social factoids every second of the day. Walmart's data store is estimated to be more than 2.5 petabytes—the result of keeping the details of more than a million transactions per hour.1 Many web sites contain forums that allow purchasers to rate hotel rooms, airline flights, or other products and services. Organizations have customer service, sales, human resource, and other data in their OLTP stores. An estimated 90 trillion e-mails per year and a wealth of other memos and phone records are available for analysis. These existing sources amount to an almost overwhelming amount of information that can be stored, processed, and understood—that is, the Big Data phenomenon.

The cloud enables the coupling of data stores to create BI that can help organizations competitively. Big Data also affects the individual; for example, the individual can use existing data stores to research companies where they want to be employed or to find out about an organization's customer service record, just as the enterprise can use these sources to uncover customers' perceptions of their products. The uses of ...

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