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Is big data a nightmare?

Companies have no choice but to leverage all of the data they aggregated before, and start collecting it from new and unfamiliar sources, as well as still provide the same speed and efficiency

By now, we all understand the enormous scale of big data and that enterprises have indeed begun to store, collect, and analyze historical data for intelligent action. This basic minimum is not enough, nor will it ever be, as big data continues to wildly increase. The few companies who actually use big data to continuously improve, spot opportunities, and mitigate risks, all in real time, are soaring past those who let data collect dust in databases, under the false impression that collecting the data is enough.

There is no good way to correlate data at rest with data in motion (including operational and transient data that will never be stored in databases) with external data (suppliers, partners, customers via social networks all beyond the firewall) with data from mobile devices with data from cloud applications without an integrated backbone.

With data alone, businesses cannot address what is clearly laid out for them because the "new integration" must address so much more. We have all grown to expect real-time results from the data that has already been collected, and there is no going back. Companies have no choice but to leverage all of the data they aggregated before, and start collecting it from new and unfamiliar sources, as well as still provide the same speed and efficiency. No, this is not a futuristic dream.

It's time companies not only get real-time results, but also wake up and get in touch with reality. In fact, they need to wake up three times because there are three realities that IT is going to face with the "new integration:"

1. Companies need to integrate real-time data into business processes.

2. Businesses will need to deal with data that is beyond the firewall.

3. There is a rise in system as a service (SaaS) tools and the public cloud, so companies will need an integrated cloud solutions.

This "new integration" is necessary for the next generation of business. Companies need to collect new data and deliver it to new platforms, as smartphones, tablets, and the cloud have become entrenched in our lives. Before now, companies have addressed projects with point-to-point integration, and anything more than that was over-ambitious. There are just too many platforms, devices and standards for your company to waste time, money, and resources playing connect the dots with the old integration solution. Not only that, but it requires modifications every time an application is upgraded, completely undermining the reasons to integrate.

It is time for integration itself to get an upgrade so that companies have the efficient, cost-effective and agile solution to a "big" problem. Integration no longer has to give anyone nightmares. In fact, it should bring the agility to make quick changes, the flexibility to deal with many data types, the ability to support event-driven business processes, and a direct path to return on investment.

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Date:Jul 15, 2013
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