I'm not sure that I buy that most of us collaborate very much on Facebook. We share; we riff; we entertain; we stay in touch. Sure, Facebook makes it easier to share information than many corporate software systems do (and at most companies, we all deal with too many systems, each with their own quirks and security.)
But Facebook certainly has not won accolades from its user base for its last few rounds of interface tweaks, nor for its continued fiddling with security settings. Unlike Google tools, Facebook hasn't become a widely-used part of the corporate workday. Yet it is our continued willingness to share via Facebook and its rivals that is creating a mountain of data for businesses to analyze.
Big data captures the imagination of IT people because it helps them achieve the holy grail: Generate actionable data quickly to help the business make better decisions, innovate, and increase revenue.
But big, as it turns out, is just the start of the big data conversation. As InformationWeek's Doug Henschen reports, variety, velocity, and volume are the hallmarks of the big data era. It's not just about how big your big data store is. Check out the expert advice he shares on compressing the data, sharing the results, dealing with new types of data (including all that social media data,) and more.
The more velocity we have access to, the more we want, as business people--and as consumers. Think about it: Don't you expect your customer service requests to be acted upon more quickly now? Don't you expect your loyalty rewards benefits to kick in faster than ever?
I signed up for a hotel rewards program over the weekend and was shocked they didn't instantly send me a discount offer of some kind. "Didn't their database kick that out yet?" I couldn't help thinking. After all, I now get instant alerts on my iPhone when a favorite store is offering a one-afternoon discount. Data analysis speed. Your business team will never be sated, because your customers never will be.