Key progress in big data

Several key trends have contributed to progress in big data recently, and buy-side financial institutions might harness knowledge of these breakthroughs to help use their vital information more effectively.

Major platforms harness big data, says expert
In a recent speech given at an InformationWeek conference held in Las Vegas, Jim Fowler, chief information officer of a business unit of a global conglomerate that provides advanced technologies, elaborated on the various advancements that have helped big data progress. The CIO noted that many major platforms such as NoSQL databases and Hadoop are leveraging the vast amount of information that is available.

“We’ve seen the cartel of database vendors broken up, and some great new entrants give us new capabilities that we’ve never had before at a cost that we’ve never seen,” he told the news source.

As a result of such advances, market experts could potentially create breakthroughs in terms of data storage and how this key information is aggregated. In addition, they might be able to dramatically lower the cost of computing since they can now access resources with far less expense than before.

Even amid this progress, many market experts are still struggling to utilize big data effectively, according to The Financial Times. Many statisticians are putting significant due diligence into creating appropriate methods for making the most of the vast amounts of information available. While there is no question that data is abundant, gleaning actionable, helpful insights may take quite a bit more.

Big data users face substantial uncertainty, says professor
“It’s the wild west right now,” Patrick Wolfe, a professor at University College London, told the news source. “People who are clever and driven will twist and turn and use every tool to get sense out of these data sets, and that’s cool. But we’re flying a little bit blind at the moment.”

However, things may not be as bleak as Wolfe would assert, as Fowler noted in his speech that market participants are now more capable of combining information contained in multiple data sets, according to InformationWeek.

“Not only do we now have 100 million hours of operating-data and maintenance-and-part-swap-data across 1,700 turbines, but we can now marry that with external data such as weather information and process against it in one place,” the CIO stated, the media outlet reported.

While it is positive that users of big data are making progress, one market expert emphasized that experts have been encountering challenges for years in their efforts to derive actionable information from big data, according to The Financial Times.

“We have a new resource here,” Professor David Hand, who teaches as Imperial College London, told the media outlet. “But nobody wants ‘data’. What they want are the answers.”

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