back to article Bring your spade: The BIG DATA Gold Rush has begun

The forty-niners rushed to California in search of gold. Some even found it. But most stayed poor and the only people who got reliably rich were people who made and sold the picks and shovels the miners needed. Is that the way it is with big data? Will the only people to get rich be the suppliers of big data computer software …

  1. Andy 73

    If analysis leads to actions

    There are some companies who use big data systems solely so they can tell their clients that their services need big data systems. Equally some use the technology because if their employees thought they were working in yet another low-end service shed, they'd go and find somewhere more CV positive to work.

    On the other hand, you can find yourself working on a project where the company behaviour is sufficiently well characterised (MVT et. al.) and the product sufficiently data-led (e.g. large volume online sales) that you can plot a straight line between insight and action, and then close the loop with feedback on sales uplift. At that time, yes you can realise value. If you are unable to identify what you are going to change as a result of the vague insights you hope you might get, or if you are unable to measure the difference between your approaches, then big data (however you define it) is not going to pay its way.

  2. Version 1.0 Silver badge

    Larry got rich the same way

    Oracle became fabulously wealthy by selling software that allowed large companies to manage themselves into oblivion - and here we are having the same class of discussion all over again.

  3. Cthugha


    prospecting fools chasing the Mother Lode of nuggets in the tailings of Oracle........

  4. Keven E.

    More bile from the spawn of satan

    Marketing trying again to justify their shite attempts at back seat psychology, claiming the one or two successes a year they have as potential ROI gold. If they only had 100,000 times the data available they could somehow prove they're worth the original 1/100,000. Can't you see the potential?

    Also, the tech sector infrastructure bubble needs a coat of paint on it because all that unused bandwidth and storage capacity is going to waste... maybe if it was a different shade of mauve. Why won't they just let us all watch movies on another screen at work... and then not only will ad rates go up, we'll have the pedal to the metal... full speed ahead... and trendy, to boot. We do have an unlimited data plan, don't we?

    As the BOFH once said (I paraphrase) "Are you listening to the screaming of the fans"?

  5. CyberH

    Chris, very nice article on Big Data. When considering a big data strategy, I think it's worth mentioning HPCC Systems from LexisNexis. Designed by data scientists, HPCC Systems is an open source data-intensive supercomputing platform to process and solve Big Data analytical problems and can help companies derive actionable insights from their data.

    HPCC Systems provides proven solutions to handle what are now called Big Data problems, and have been doing so for more than a decade. The main advantages over other alternatives are the real-time delivery of data queries and the extremely powerful ECL language programming model. More info at

    1. Lynrd

      I condemn you as a forum spammer.

      And a boring one at that.

      Do data scientists wear white lab coats? That would be cool.

  6. Unlimited

    Partnerships do occur

    "say you'll pay them via a 10 per cent share of any extra profit their systems generate"

    More like: Hi massive retailer, we'll setup the appliances and BI software at half price and support it and in return you give us a cut of the revenue you get selling access to the data back to your suppliers.

    It happens.

  7. Keven E.

    A bag of rocks by any other name...

    " to handle what are now called Big Data problems..."


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