[FoRK] Big Data

J. Andrew Rogers andrew at jarbox.org
Sat Feb 4 09:48:55 PST 2012

On Feb 4, 2012, at 5:19 AM, Koen Holtman wrote:
> In big data about humans, there is no such technical argument about how
> big the data needs to be.  There is just the assumption that more data
> inevitably leads to more knowledge, more profitable ad placement, a more
> efficient economy, etc.  

On the contrary, the current size of big data for analyzing human behavior is much too small for most interesting applications. We will not reach a significant diminishing return point until the data is at least several orders of magnitude larger.

The problem for most organizations is that parallelizing collection is easier than parallelizing analysis.

> I suspect that for many of these investor-supported and
> advertiser-supported big data sets, the point of diminishing returns was
> passed a long time ago.  The more perceptive high priests might know this
> already, but if they do they are not telling.

Not the case at all, many of these companies are engaged in strategic positioning. The notion is that when the remaining computer science and related problems are worked out they will have unique assets that can be leveraged to gain marketshare.

J. Andrew Rogers
Twitter: @jandrewrogers

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