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According to the New York Times, “Big Data are high volume, high velocity, and/or high variety information assets that require new forms of processing to enable enhanced decision making, insight discovery and process optimization.” Therefore, we are seeing a newer trend in technology that opens the door to a new approach to understanding the world and how decisions are being made in it. Within this evolution of Big Data, we are seeing a big impact in terms of how we look at things economically, politically, and socially. Examples can be seen in various categories including, science, government, and the private sector. One example in particular is the decoding of the human genome which originally took 10 years to process. Now it can be achieved in one week due to the expedited processing of Big Data.

Big Data is a cost effective way to improve decision making skills on a societal level. Big Data does not come without its flaws. There is a huge concern for privacy issues that goes along with the amount of information being processed on a day to day basis specifically on a private sector/ government front. Big Data is closely associated with Hadoop, the core platform for structuring and processing Big Data to make it more useful for analytical purposes. One company that has made a large investment in the processing of Big Data is IBM who is recognized foremost as the innovator in quickly processing large amounts of data. According to IBM there are 5 major uses for Big Data in order of frequency: “retail, security threats, operating information technology, analyzing information from other networked machines like electricity grids, and incorporating new data sources, like Twitter into existing databases.”

In all, Big Data is an interesting way to look at the future of technology and where newer technologies such as Apache Hadoop are taking us. We are certainly seeing a data driven shift in our society due to velocity, volume, and variety of data being input and output each day which in turns effects societal, economical, and political developments.

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