As we are now enjoying the lovely Independence Day holiday weekend, it's always nice to reflect back on what makes America so special a place in the world. No, not U.S. Soccer's latest performance in the footy cup, though Tim Howard was indeed heroic. Instead, I'm referring to some special documents that laid the groundwork for the last couple hundred years: the Declaration and the Constitution. If you haven't read these lately, I highly recommend taking the time. These pieces respectively show that sometimes, you need to break history to reinvent a better result, and that foresight and planning can serve extremely well as a roadmap for the future. There are some valuable lessons to be learned and relearned, and I contend these are relevant to big data initiatives today.
Traditional business intelligence and analytics has helped many companies and governments over the last few decades, but we need to rethink some of the basic assumptions. The Vs of big data really are freeing us from the tyranny of past restrictions on volume of data, velocity of analysis, and variety of data sources. Most everyone should be willing to engage in some creative destruction to capitalize on new approaches and technologies.
Most folks in IT know they have to work together to invent a complete architecture that will actually work in the complexities of the real world, some well known but much still unforeseen. This has never been more true than in building a big data solution. Earlier this year, we published a research report, Enterprise Data Analytics Trends, and one of my favorite graphics from the study is below. What this tells me is that for a new big data initiative to succeed, you will need stakeholders from EVERY major IT discipline engaged in the decision making. This contrasts with many IT projects that tend to be more or less contained within a couple of domains at most.
"Love it or leave it" may be a tough sounding challenge to your political or departmental opposite, but it doesn't actually get us very far. Let's work together again, my friends, and build an even brighter future with big data to show the way.
For now though, kick back and enjoy some pretty explosions in the American skies....