Big Data has become a facet of everyday life whether we are aware of it or not. Every day, we create 2.5 quintillion bytes of data which are being created from a variety of sources including digital events like Facebook likes and photo sharing to weather sensors to predict hurricanes.  To dive deeper into the Era of Big Data, Medio’s Co-founder, Chairman and CTO Brian Lent participated in an expert panel hosted by the MIT Enterprise Forum of the Northwest to discuss the opportunities and impact created by big data. The panel included big data experts, Paul Sanford, General Manager of Splunk and Stephen Purpura, CEO and Co-founder of Context Relevant. The panel was moderated by Len Jordan, a managing partner of Madrona Venture Group. To kick off the panel, Len Jordan gave an overview about what exactly ‘Big Data’ is in the context of architecture, infrastructure and cloud computing. Jordan then led into the panel discussion by highlighting the future uses of big data including: mobility, healthcare, government, and education and asked each panelist to give a use-case.

The expert Big Data panel, from left to right: Sam Sarmad (Chair of MITEF), Len Jordan  (Madrona), Brian Lent (Medio), Stephen Purpura, (Context Relevant) and Paul Sanford (Splunk)

The expert Big Data panel, from left to right: Sam Sarmad (Chair of MITEF), Len Jordan (Madrona), Brian Lent (Medio), Stephen Purpura, (Context Relevant) and Paul Sanford (Splunk)

Each panelist spoke about how their respective companies were tackling big data in their own unique ways. Paul Sanford of Splunk explained his company as a ‘Google for enterprises’, meaning that Splunk allows companies to make searchable data from an app, server or network device in real-time. Stephen Purpura spoke about how Context Relevant helps companies use data to make better decisions. Medio’s Brian Lent highlighted that the value of Big Data lies solely in the applications that are being and will be built on top of today’s Big Data infrastructures.  Specifically, Lent discussed the value of combining Predictive Analytics and Big Data to derive value for enterprises.  Supporting the importance of combining big data with mobile analytics, Lent described specific opportunities that make mobile a unique use-case for data collection and analytics including:

  • Ubiquity of mobile devices
  • Relevance to each consumer
  • Context-aware attributes—such as real-time geo-location

Lent gave an example of how T-Mobile uses Medio’s technology to analytically target recommendations and offers to their users to create a better personalized experience and increase customer lifetime value.

The panel continued the engaging conversation to cover an array of topics relating to big data including privacy and policy implications, Hadoop infrastructure and many specific use cases on how big data is impacting our everyday lives through a variety of innovation mobile apps.

In Summary, Lent pointed out that Big Data in itself is simply a ‘state of being’ and in many cases has become a ‘marketing term’ that seemingly everyone is gravitating towards.  The real value of Big Data lies in the ability to operationalize it and apply key data insights -derived from predictive analytics- to create a more efficient, effective and data driven world.