Almost every physical object can be connected to the internet.
We are racing forward to an era of hyper-connectivity. Objects now have the ability to communicate with each other, all using DATA!
The Internet of Things is happening now!
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a term that has been thrown around for a few years now, but many of us may still not fully understand what it means.
The IoT refers to a network of physical objects or “things” that have the capabilities to both collect and exchange any amount of data. They do this through a variety of software, electronics, sensors, and network connectivity.
So many devices that we own are connected to this “Internet of Things”, and we are using this network of data everyday to make our lives easier. This includes everything from cell phones, coffee makers, washing machines, headphones, wearable devices and almost anything else you can think of. If it has an on and off switch, then chances are good that it is connected to the IoT.
Now that more and more objects are connected to the IoT, those objects can all communicate to optimize day-to-day practices, create new opportunities, and save us money!
This is a great video looking at 7 bind-blowing facts of the Internet of Things.
“In 2008, there were already more objects connected to the internet than people.”
“The ATM was one of the first objects of the Internet of Things, dating back to 1974.”
“This year we will have 4.9 Billion connected things.”
“By 2020, we will have 6.1 Billion smartphone users.”
“The global market for wearable devices has grown 223% in 2015.”
“By 2020, a quarter of a billion vehicles will be connected to the internet.”
“All of these devices collect and transmit data, contributing to our Big Data world!”
You can pretty much look anywhere on the internet today and find an article, post, or book written on the benefits of Big Data. It is on the mind of every executive out there, and rightfully so. While the benefits do greatly outweigh the downsides, it still needs to be brought to attention that there often remains a weak link in big data- the data itself.
Without good data, the business intelligence gained from it can all be deemed useless. Without good data, companies find themselves spending unnecessary time and money in an attempt to clean it up. So, rather than focusing right now on how much data we could possibly gather, shouldn’t we be focusing on how to retrieve the ‘correct’ data?
Annual BI and Big Data expenditures are expected to reach $114 billion by the end of 2018- not a number to be taken lightly! It is estimated that almost $65 Billion of that is absorbed or unrealized by businesses each year due to return mail/bad data. Poor data is prevalent in nearly every major industry, from healthcare to retail and finance to telecommunications.
USPS gave us a perfect example of how crucial good data is when they incurred $1.5 Billion in costs processing “undeliverable as addressed” mail. While there were many other factors, over half a billion dollars in expense was due to businesses having wrong addresses in their databases.
Organizations can continue to go along as many are today, gathering all of the data they can get their hands on, because somewhere within that, the good data will fall. However, in an age of efficiency and desire to save as much time and money as possible, executives should drive their organizations to ensure data is properly entered from the beginning or corrected within the systems and databases. Thankfully, there are many products already on the market that can help companies with this today.
After getting rid of the crud in the data and spending our time retrieving only what matters, we will begin to see Big Data being used to its fullest potential. Oh, the possibilities!
The music industry has gone through huge changes over the last 10 years, and finding a “fair” way for artists to make money for their work has become something of a project. CD sales plummeted ever since digital downloads became so popular and readily available. Recently, digital downloads have been steadily declining as music-streaming platforms such as Pandora, Spotify, and Apple Music have gained a rapid following.
Simply put, the industry is changing. So, how can we help artists receive the compensation and recognition they deserve? The answer to that lies within big data.
Pandora’s recent acquisition of Ticketfly gives us a glimpse at the future of the streaming industry- a future that is evolving to include live music. And that’s where the money is- if Pandora can manage the big data.
When streaming was introduced, it gave previously unheard artists a new opportunity to be heard and put the listeners in the driver’s seat. Streaming companies may now be able to drive those changes by using data and directing listeners straight to live events.
Traditionally, ticketing companies have used purchased data along with associated demographic data to target their customers for upcoming events. That should be enough right? Wrong. To accurately use predictive analytics to target these music lovers, streaming companies need to use their years of data from their millions of users. This data is rich with usable information, whether it be demographics from registration, what artists one skips, or what time of day they prefer certain music. Combining this with fan data from ticketing companies benefits both the artist and the listener. So far, Pandora is on the right track with this.
Selling concert tickets to fans based on the types of music they enjoy is not a breakthrough advancement in this industry. However, what can act as a radical change is going to revolve around what data is being used and in conjunction with what.
With Pandora’s recent acquisition, they will not only be able to suggest artists similar to those you already like, but they will also be able to notify you of upcoming concerts that they predict you will like.
By using big data to grow and monetize these fan bases, more live event tickets will be sold and artists will have the opportunity to gain the credit they deserve.
There is data that can be found in every industry and profession out there- from healthcare to professional sports. If the legal profession is meant to be involved in all of these as well, one question comes to the front of my mind: how can big data help the legal profession?
Let’s start of by stating that there is so much data being collected around the world, and depending on how it is stored, catalogued and indexed, it can take a person days or weeks to sort through. Thankfully in today’s world, however, we have the luxury of programs and computers- computers that can go through this data instantly. Having these programs and applications accessible to us can instantly bring down the cost of analyzing the data, provided you get it into the right format.
Let’s take an example of a case involving product liability. There is a product that is defective. Where does big data come in?
Well now you have all of the records from the creation of that product: the memos, the mockups, and drawings. You have everything that had to do with the end product. You may even have the reviews and testimonials- good or bad. What would have taken months to go through by hand may now take an hour with some computer application. This is because the computer is going to search for certain words, and if the attorney picks the right words and the data is set up in the right format, the attorney now has everything they need at their fingertips. And all in a matter of minutes!
One may think it would be enough as an attorney to go out there and say ‘this product is defective and here are 500,000 complaints about it.’ The reality is that you can actually go one step further with the tools that are now given to us. The attorney can go back into all of the 500,000 complaints and determine what the common component is- and maybe that common component is user error. Then the tables suddenly turn and it is not the product- it is the user!
Big data can now help lead attorneys to answers that they may have never gotten a chance to come to with time and money constraints. Whatever side may be benefitting, information is power and big data is providing just that!
What better way is there to learn about big data than listening to a podcast about it? I found a really great podcast recently that dives into all of the different aspects and current issues that we are dealing with when it comes to big data. There are also podcasts that help us understand the best ways to save and make money with your data.
Their most recent podcast, 5 Lessons About Big Data brought some interesting facts to light. These 5 lessons can help you to leverage the data that you already have, and ultimately, save you money:
Use big data to make information transparent.
Create and store more transactional data in digital form.
Big data allows for the segmentation of customers so that companies can better tailor products and services.
Sophisticated analytics improve decision making, minimize risks, and ascertain valuable insights that would otherwise remain hidden.
Big data can be used to develop the next generation of products and services.
The next step is for you to use all of these lessons to add value to your data and your company.