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Got your "big data" plan in place? If not, you may want to start thinking about implementing one. Big data is being hailed - or hyped, depending on your point of view - as a key strategic business asset of the future. That means it's only a matter of time before the suits in the corner office want to know IT's thoughts on the matter.
What to tell them? To be sure, handling large amounts of data isn't virgin territory for most IT departments, but beyond the hype, analysts say, big data really is different from the data warehousing, data mining and business intelligence analysis that have come before it.
Data is being generated with greater velocity and variability than ever before, and, unlike data in the past, most of it is unstructured and raw (sometimes called "gray data").
Blogs, social media networks, machine sensors and location-based data are generating a whole new universe of unstructured data that - when quickly captured, managed and analyzed - can help companies uncover facts and patterns they weren't able to recognize in the past.
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