Big Data

How Big is Your Data?

Big Data architecture can add layers of complexity to an IT environment.  Not sure if you’re dealing with Big Data?  Use Gartner’s 3Vs as a litmus test: Volume, Velocity, and Variety.

The 3Vs become a reasonable test on whether you should add Big Data to your architecture.

  1. Volume. The amount of data.  How much data are you processing? Some smartwatch manufacturers store every user interaction. For these companies, this might be hundreds of terabytes or petabytes of data.
  2. Velocity. The speed of data. How fast is your data moving in and out of the system? Some data is created and captured in realtime at the point of the transaction.
  3. Variety. The assortment of data. Do you have different types of data? Data can consist of text, images, audio, video and the supporting metadata.

Having only 2 of the 3 Vs may mean that you can avoid adding Big Data to your architecture and skip the added complexity.

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Big Data, Data Science

Using Prescriptive Analytics to Make Better Decisions

Business Analytics is broken down into three distinct phases.

  1. Descriptive – What happened? This phase involves traditional BI tools to help organizations process and report on historical data. Trends are analyzed and decisions are made. The majority of management reporting uses this approach.
  2. Predictive – What will happen? This phase uses machine learning algorithms to build models from historical data and then uses those same models to predict a future outcome or its likelihood.
  3. Prescriptive – What action should be taken? This phase prescribes actions to achieve the best possible outcome based on the predictions made. Actions that lead to the highest chance of success are prescribed.

Prescriptive Analytics predicts and compares the likely outcomes of any number of actions, and then chooses the very best action to help advance an organization’s objectives.

Consider implications for the healthcare industry. Healthcare predictions are most useful when that knowledge prescribes clinical action for each predicted outcome.

Similar insights can help organizations improve decision making and have more control of business outcomes. Prescriptive analytics is an important next step on the path to insight-based actions and recommendations.