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5 Big Data Predictions For 2013

Vendors and analysts make bold big data predictions for next year. Are their crystal balls cloudy or clear?

13 Big Data Vendors To Watch In 2013
13 Big Data Vendors To Watch In 2013
(click image for larger view and for slideshow)
What will 2013 bring for big data vendors and users? Hey, your guess is as good as ours. But 'tis the season for pugnacious prognosticators to don their soothsayer caps, and it seems some companies have a predilection for prophecy, or something like that.

Anyway, we've compiled a prediction-palooza of five 2013 big data projections that have come our way in the past week or so. What do you think? Are these shrewd speculations, obvious observations, or foolish forecasts?

1. The term "big data" soon will be history. Hortonworks president Herb Cunitz predicts the "big" in "big data" will become redundant. "As Apache Hadoop has evolved it has become a standard platform for this new world and by the end of 2013, the 'big' moniker will no longer be necessary…" he writes in a blog post. "It is all just data, after all. Big data and all the predictions for this space will collapse into data management by the analysts and all those following, including a lot of the 'big' vendors."

[ Big data is showing up in some unexpected places. Check them out at Big Data's Surprising Uses: From Lady Gaga To CIA. ]

2. Budget will be a roadblock for many enterprises. Rainstor, a big data solutions provider, believes that budget woes will pose one of the biggest roadblocks for organizations hoping to solve their data-related challenges. "Growth rates are not slowing down. Building out capacity for existing needs and future requirements is critical. Too much too soon is not the way to go, and Big Data does not necessarily mean big budgets. The tolerance for $20,000-$40,000 per terabyte of managed data is fast disappearing in the minds of enterprise decision makers," the company said in a statement.

3. Data warehouses will go the way of the dinosaur. Pervasive Software, a data management and analytics company, foresees gloom and doom for existing data warehouses.

"The 'Big Data Revolution' is exposing how technically obsolete the existing data warehousing infrastructure really is. Relational technology is not well suited for large-scale analytical workloads. Big data analytics demand a completely modern technology infrastructure, such as Hadoop and its ecosystem," the company said via email.

4. Big data will become mainstream. According to IT services provider ICC, big data in 2013 will not only go mainstream, it'll also overcome skeptics, bring the power of analytics to common folks, and cure lachanophobia (the fear of vegetables). OK, we made up the last one.

"Technology advances in hardware and software have converged to allow average business folks to begin asking questions against the mountain of data once thought impossible to analyze if for no other reason than its sheer size," said Jim Gallo, ICC's national director of business analytics, in a statement.

Finally, our favorite feat of prognostication is from research firm Gartner:

5. Big data will help Santa Claus' North Pole, Inc. (NPI) toy-manufacturing operation slash its carbon footprint by 2020. "Millions of climate, atmospheric, emissions, deforestation, and animal and human population data points are collected annually to help NPI achieve its target of a carbon neutrality by 2020," writes Gartner analyst Doug Laney in a particularly jolly blog post.

Santa is a Gartner client. Who knew?

Now it's your turn. Please add your fearless 2013 big data predictions below.

Predictive analysis is getting faster, more accurate and more accessible. Combined with big data, it's driving a new age of experiments. Also in the new, all-digital Advanced Analytics issue of InformationWeek: Are project management offices a waste of money? (Free registration required.)

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