• Konstantin Dokuchaev

How Big Data affects our lives

Updated: Oct 13

We often hear about regular fashion applications that use some magic things like neural networks, big data, or are based on the beginnings of artificial intelligence. For many, this is magic, because not everyone understands or realizes what is really hidden behind these words.


Let's figure it out together, what is the big date?


As Wikipedia, which knows everything best, says:


"Big data in information technology - a set of approaches, tools and methods for processing structured and unstructured data of huge volumes and significant diversity for obtaining human-perceived results that are effective in conditions of continuous growth, distribution to numerous nodes of a computer network, formed in the late 2000s, alternative to traditional database management systems and Business Intelligence solutions"

 

Big data is a way of processing vast and diverse amounts of information that arrive every second.

 

How do we face Big Data every day?

Man is the main generator and consumer of big data. Every day we create as much new information as we used to create for decades. It doesn't matter that most of it is our selfies. Now 90% of the available information has been created over the past two years.


We generate information not only using photos and social posts. This is our every search query, a step calculated by a fitness tracker, a video viewed on YouTube.


Almost every one of our acts is recorded by someone and becomes part of Big Data.

Google alone makes about 40,000 searches every second, yielding about 1.2 trillion searches for big data each year.


And every day the amount of data is increasing faster. If today we generate 4.4 zetabytes of data, then by 2020 we will create 44.


By 2020, almost a third of all data will pass through cloud services, which means it will be analyzed.


Interestingly, corporate computers are not always used to analyze big data. Often users themselves provide their own computers for solving various scientific problems. At the same time, 73% of organizations have invested or are going to invest in the development of big data.


Large companies like Google, Facebook and even the state process and use this information to improve our lifestyle. Well, or to show more relevant ads.


To simplify, big data is collected from several sources:


Open data: social, economic and other public information about cities, countries. Data on legislation, statistics of sports events. In fact, any open background information.

Social networks: everything that you and I voluntarily tell Facebook and VKontakte. Even if the post is not public, it becomes part of Big Data. On average, Facebook users write about 31.25 million posts and view 2.77 million videos every minute.

The Internet of Things is another interesting term. If your refrigerator has internet access, then your products are also big data. Any sensors in your phone, smartwatch, fitness trackers convey a variety of information about you and your activities. For example, in 2016, about 1.4 billions (more than a billion) of smartphones were sold. Each of which has many sensors to collect data about their owner. And every year more and more things appear with Internet access, and yesterday they worked wonderfully without it.

Personal data is also becoming part of big data. Often this data is impersonal: your medical record details, to-do lists, and so on.

Commercial transactions. We are talking not only about bank transactions, but also about any payments on the Internet.

Any other content we create: YouTube videos, Instagram photos. Every minute we upload 300 hours of videos to YouTube, and 2015 year we uploaded about a trillion photos, of which millions are publicly available. By the end of 2017, 80% of all photos will be taken on a smartphone


All this is frightening and sometimes you want to hide under a stone and get fire with the help of two sticks. However, Big Data is the future and you have to put up with the fact that the Great Computer knows everything about us. Whether we want it or not. Based on this data, we can not only receive targeted advertising aimed only at us, but also significantly improve our lives. Only most do not understand how this improvement is happening and are frightened by any mention of a big date.


If you have already been struck by the size of how much information is processed, then here is another interesting fact. Today, only 0.5% of all available data is processed. Therefore, the most interesting thing is still ahead.


Predicting the future

Often Big Data is used to predict the future. For example, sporting events like the Olympic Games. Scientists in 2012, using a computer model, drove out the emulation of the Games and received a forecast that the United States would receive 108 medals, but in fact the United States received 104 medals.


Of course, the human factor plays not the least role in sports, but for a long time, mathematical analysis has influenced the purchase and sale of players in baseball and in other sports games. With the arrival of big data and neural networks, this analysis has become even easier.


With their help, it becomes possible to prevent epidemics. By analyzing searches and posts on social networks, doctors can track the increase in key words-symptoms of diseases and invite users to consult a doctor for preventive medical care.


Improve our present

In some cities today you can get to work without traffic jams, thanks to big data. For example, in London, car traffic is analyzed every second and traffic lights are switched according to traffic congestion. Sometimes they even force drivers to go around the traffic jam. You go to work and you don't even know that there was an accident on a nearby street.


Surely you have heard about Tesla cars that can drive without the help of a driver. Perhaps these are the first self-driving cars available to anyone. Tesla is guided in space not only by a satellite, map, GPS and other sensors.


The car constantly analyzes your driving style: how often you pick up speed, press the brake pedal, how you move along your daily routes. This data is collected from all the company's cars and is returned after analysis.

 

Yesterday you trusted Tesla Autopilot, and at the turn it did not slow down or even turned the wrong way. Today, the car will carry another owner through this area without errors.

 

Our present and daily

Distracting from the future, it seems that Big Data does not affect us and our lives at all. However, this is not the case at all.


For example, the creation of maps for GPS navigation is carried out using Big Data. Thousands of satellite images, car traffic analysis, accident data. All this is taken into account in any modern navigation application and the route will be built on the basis of this data.

News feeds on social networks have long shown posts not by publication date, but on the basis of what the network's algorithm thinks about our preferences.

Streaming services like Google Music or Netflix offer us music tracks or videos based on what we've already watched. In this case, the time of day, day of the week and many other parameters can be taken into account.


What in the end

Already today it is difficult to find at least one area of ​ ​ our life that is not subject to big data.


Any of our actions in one way or another has already been counted by someone and will affect our actions in the future.

More and more stores will offer products that we may need before we even think about it. Doctors will be able to take preventive measures in advance against the future disease and prevent epidemics. VKontakte will tell us who to choose for president this year, and nearby there will be an advertisement for a refrigerator, which we have been dreaming of for a week. And all this is a Big date that you should not be afraid of, and about which you should know.


#BigData




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