Latest posts by Kalsi (see all)
- Who Else Wants to Know the Mystery Behind Sentiment Analysis? - June 23, 2019
- 5 Real Examples of Artificial Intelligence - October 4, 2018
- Everything you wanted to know about AWS IoT - March 7, 2017
Our ode to the power of software engineering seems to have become quite popular among those who love software engineering like us. This has encouraged us – let’s fan the flames of another one of our deep passions – big data. Actually, our power of software blog mentioned eCommerce / Internet Retail and Adtech as 2 businesses where big data is already having a transformational impact. A lot has already been said, some of it by us, about how big data is helping better customer targeting and improving sales performance. That, though is not the end of the story – let’s look at 3 “businesses” that have also been transformed by the power of big data and in the process have the potential to hugely impact our own lives as well.
Government: A Deloitte survey of over 1200 government officials from 70 countries found that 96% of them agreed that their specific area of work was being disrupted by digital technology. There is such a self-evident case for the deployment of big data in governance. Government departments create, collate and store vast amounts of data concerning virtually every aspect of the life of the citizens they serve. They are also specifically concerned about ensuring the services they provide are utilized by the people who most need them while trying to get the maximum bang for the budget buck, well one hopes that is the case. Today governments are using big data in areas as diverse as security & counterterrorism, transportation, and permit management, agriculture research and education. The US Federal Government is taking big data seriously, appointing D J Patil, ex of LinkedIn, as Chief Data Scientist. A research report commissioned by the White House sings with intent, “Properly implemented, big data will become a historic driver of progress, helping our nation perpetuate the civic and economic dynamism that has long been its hallmark.” There is still debate on whether we need Big Government, but there can be no debate that we need Big Data Government.
Healthcare: This could be where the greatest transformative impact will be felt on society driven by the power of big data and Analytics. There are already so many patients generating so much data that can help so many different, complementary players in the eco-system like care providers, insurers, pharma companies and medical researchers provide better clinical outcomes. The market is there – an iQ4i survey estimated the healthcare analytics market at $ 20 Billion by 2020. Big data is making a pretty public impact in personal health & wellness driven by smartphone and wearables penetration. Witness the partnership between Apple & IBM Watson forged with the intent of gathering personal user data that will eventually help derive insights with applicability to wider population groups. Big data is also being widely used by drug companies in Clinical trials and Real World Evidence to refine and make their drugs more effective and better targeted. Care providers are turning to big data and predictive analytics in increasing numbers to help improve the quality of care they provide and to enhance clinical outcomes. The Pittsburgh Health Data Alliance, a coming together of Carnegie Mellon University & the Univ. of Pittsburgh Medical Center, is a newly formed body focused on how to use cutting edge big data & analytics technologies in the improvement of healthcare. There is no longer any doubt – big data is strong medicine.
Energy: A report by GTM Research even a couple of years ago had foreseen that power utility would spend as much as $ 3.8 Billion on data analytics in 2020. The bulk of this was forecast to go into analytics to help manage grid operations better and then into consumer analytics. An exciting area is the creation of “Smart Grids”. Managing grid operations is highly complex and in many ways a key determinant of the successful operation of a utility. Demand for energy fluctuates from time to time and from location to location – the utility is expected to make real-time decisions about the generation, procurement and distribution to optimally address this fluctuating demand. Then there are factors like distribution losses, pilferage, and operational breakdowns to factor in. Further complexity is added by the entry of alternative energy producers at the small and large scale. Utilities are turning to “Smart Grids” to help decision making. This is, in essence, a big data play driven by vast amounts of real-time data provided by smart devices, smart meters, sensors, and other data gathering and estimation tools. The smart grid uses this information and automatically responds to the changes in energy demand. The hope is this will help utilities predict demand better and hence serve better. Agencies like the US Department of Energy are encouraged enough to put in place programs to fund Smart Grid development. Let’s give the last word on the subject to Rick Thompson, President, and Co-Founder at GTM Research. He says, “We are now moving into a market where the spotlight will be on the data analytics software that will allow utilities to track, visualize and predict everything from grid operations to electricity consumption. These capabilities are the core elements of what GTM Research calls the ‘soft grid.’”
There are truly staggering numbers out there about the vast amounts of data organizations are gathering each day and it is true that much of this is being used to help these organizations sell more, service their customers better and become more profitable. That apart our view is big data can have a profound impact on our everyday lives and it is these 3 “businesses” that will drive that change. More power to big data.