Steve Mills Keynote: Big Data, Big Picture
In this morning’s first general session keynote at IBM Information on Demand, IBM Senior VP and Group Executive, Systems and Software, Steve Mills, got right to the bottom line on how organizations can go about implementing a smart information agenda and use business analytics to help them make better decisions.
As always, Mills painted in broad brushstrokes to help his audience see what has become something of a George Seurat “pointillist” painting, a sea of data, a mosaic of million and billions of bits and pixels of information that is piling up around us.
It’s increasingly daunting, both in terms of size and volume and velocity, and yet is an enormous business and knowledge insight opportunity as well.
So, you can either run for the hills, or you can buck up and dive into that sea, finding ways to organize it and make sense of it all…and maybe even learn something valuable for your organization.
The world is becoming more instrumed, interconnected, and more intelligent, but by leveraging this massive amount of new information, you can create a new kind of intelligence for your business, suggested Mills.
But it won’t come without some pain, trials, and tribulations.
Mills joked about the explosion in data and real world events, nodding his head to the ever-growing (but meaningless) Twitter and Facebook stream.
What Happens In Vegas…
“Remember,” he seemed to be warning the parents of teenagers in the audience, “what happens in Vegas…will stay on the Internet for a hundred or more years.”
Of course, with 44X as much data and content being generated over the coming decade, and with 80% of world’s data being unstructured (much of it that flow from the Internet, as my friend Ron ironically observed via Twitter), there’s a huge need for a structured approach to managing all this data.
Customers are clearly wrestling with this issue: 35% of customers will look to replace their current warehouse with a pre-integrated warehouse solution in the next 3 years, and only 14% have today.
And yet 83% of CIOs cited “Business intelligence and analytics” as part of their visionary plans to enhance competitiveness.
So, the IBM approach to mastering information for the purpose of optimizing business results is to build a flexible platform for managing, integrating, analyzing, and governing information.
This is not a random path, but rather a structured, well thought through approach that takes an holistic look at information management. Mills acknowledged we’re living in a federated world, one with a disparate set of information sources.
That’s why the Big Data challenge requires a Big Data approach, one that can help organizations deal with and benefit from massive and growing amounts of data, that can handle uncertainty around format variability and velocity of data, that can handle all that unstructured data, and one that can exploit big data in a timely and cost effective fashion.
IBM is offering a comprehensive set of solutions for Big Data, one in which interoperability will be key to addressing the unique challenges of the big data ecosystem.
Mills concluded with a big picture statement about all this Big Data: “We’re at an inflection point where IT is going to change the world in the next decade in ways even greater than that which we witnessed over the last 50 years.”