Big Data // Big Data Analytics
News
5/21/2014
07:00 AM
Kevin Casey
Kevin Casey
Slideshows
50%
50%

10 Big Data Pros To Follow On Twitter

Looking for big data expertise on Twitter? Start by following these 10 industry players.
Previous
1 of 11
Next

Twitter's kind of an ironic place to look for big data wisdom. It's an example of the ubiquitous services used by consumers and businesses alike that help generate this avalanche of data in the first place.

Twitter has a valuable collection of big data knowledge -- if you know where to find it. Like other social platforms, Twitter can sometimes get noisy. Throw in a buzzword like "big data," and the noise can get downright cacophonous. So how do you find the information you want?

It helps not to get too caught up with the term "big data" in the first place. "Often the most interesting people to follow for big data would never consider themselves 'big data experts,'" says Matt Asay, vice president of marketing, business development, and corporate strategy at MongoDB.

Asay and other folks in and around the big data universe shared with us their favorite individuals to follow on Twitter for news, ideas, networking, and more. We threw in our own picks, too, and we came up with 10 big data people worth following on Twitter. Consider it a starting point -- your own list might be much longer (more on that later). The fundamental common element: These are people from whom you can learn in 140 characters or less.

That's a good thing. Anyone can drop "big data" or related terms and technologies into a tweet or other communications, but that doesn't mean that person is an expert. I could tweet about a delicious piece of cake, but I'm not a pastry chef. So look beyond terms for substance, and think about other areas -- open source, for example -- that could be highly relevant but are not necessarily strictly big data-related. Keep this in mind as you choose people to connect with and follow.

Asay also says it's sometimes helpful to go straight to the source for certain kinds of information. "I generally prefer to follow things like Pew Research to get the data directly rather than have it parsed by someone else."

If you recall our list of IT leaders to follow on Twitter, there were a handful of ground rules. Those rules, though somewhat altered, also apply here. We weren't seeking any particular job rank or title, as long as the person's work was relevant. ("Person" is an operative word here; organizational handles were not considered.)

We also excluded people in sales, marketing, and related functions. Asay is a good example -- his own feed is worth a follow, but that pesky "marketing, business development, and corporate strategy" title got in the way. There was no prerequisite number of followers. It's more about quality and consistency than sheer popularity (though some folks here are quite popular on Twitter).

Back to that "starting point" thing: Who'd we miss? We think this is a great list, but it's intended as a beginning. Depending on your interests, your own list probably looks different. Who do you follow to stay in the loop, learn, and network? Social is about sharing, after all -- so give up the goods. Tell us which big data gurus you follow in the comments below.

Kevin Casey is a writer based in North Carolina who writes about technology for small and mid-size businesses. View Full Bio

Previous
1 of 11
Next
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Comments
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Susan Fourtané
50%
50%
Susan Fourtané,
User Rank: Ninja
5/29/2014 | 2:13:50 AM
Big data great accounts
Thanks, Kevin, for this list.

I already had @KirkDBorne on my list. (the link you have there to his account doesn't work) The rocket scientist part is just one of the most interesting aspects of his more scientific views. Being an astrophysicist his views can't ever be boring. Great account to follow, indeed.

-Susan 
Justin Belmont
50%
50%
Justin Belmont,
User Rank: Apprentice
5/27/2014 | 1:36:18 PM
Following on Twitter
This is a great list! I'll definitely have to add these names to my Twitter feed. Prose Media already follows people who talk about marketing, branding, customer service, and writing, but it's always nice to have new names to follow! A plus about adding names is that it's an awesome networking opportunity! Great post. 
merv
50%
50%
merv,
User Rank: Apprentice
5/22/2014 | 12:23:05 AM
Re: I'm a big fan... and a follower
Thanks, Doug! At the risk of a mutual admiration society, back atcha.

And thanks to Information Week for this - I'm honored to be in such company.

@merv
D. Henschen
100%
0%
D. Henschen,
User Rank: Author
5/21/2014 | 4:12:12 PM
I'm a big fan... and a follower
I'm a big fan and follower of all of these these big data "Twitterati." Merv, Kirk, Gregory, Lillian, Carla, Tony, and Marcus are all on my short list. Thanks, Kevin, for highlighting these and few other luminaries who should be on the big-data community short list.
6 Tools to Protect Big Data
6 Tools to Protect Big Data
Most IT teams have their conventional databases covered in terms of security and business continuity. But as we enter the era of big data, Hadoop, and NoSQL, protection schemes need to evolve. In fact, big data could drive the next big security strategy shift.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Tech Digest, Dec. 9, 2014
Apps will make or break the tablet as a work device, but don't shortchange critical factors related to hardware, security, peripherals, and integration.
Video
Slideshows
Twitter Feed
InformationWeek Radio
Archived InformationWeek Radio
Join us for a roundup of the top stories on InformationWeek.com for the week of December 14, 2014. Be here for the show and for the incredible Friday Afternoon Conversation that runs beside the program.
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.