crisis, europe, big data

Myths about Big data

The technology is developing at lightning speed and so are all the stories surrounding Big Data that are assuming mythical proportions. A small reality check.

It is currently the buzz word on the internet. Big Data. I follow the developments fairly closely and still see that certain things are taken out of context. For that reason, I have listed some of those myths below.

Predictive value.

The predictive value of big data as a glass ball to look into the future is based on a misunderstanding. First, the data you collect is always based on the past to which an extrapolation is applied. Very tricky. Even the CPB has the greatest difficulty predicting economic developments for a year. Often they don’t go beyond 3 months when it comes to truly reliable predictions. And the data that you collect depends on the question and the interpretation thereof by the researcher and the user of the information. As long as humans are involved in the process, there is a significant chance of error.

Better data.

Big data is better data. Actually the opposite is true. The more data you collect, the more unclear it becomes and therefore more difficult to extract the relevant information. Imagine looking for a needle in a haystack and throwing more hay on it all the time. Often the problem is that people do not really know what they are looking for and therefore collect so much data, as intelligence services do. That means a lot of work, but no more results, as the NSA had to confess to its shame in recent years. It is often not necessary to collect a lot of data. You don’t need large amounts of information to know that umbrella sales will increase in the fall. If the right logic and intelligence are lacking in models, all the information in the world will not help you.

We have to come!

The companies that are currently engaged in Big Data are mainly global players who have the financial capacity to engage in this. That is not to say that SMEs miss the boat. The development is actually still in its infancy. It is now also difficult for large players to demonstrate the real added value of Big Data for their organization.

In the coming years, the technology will develop further and eventually become cheaper and more available. More and more professionals are entering the market that can support companies in the development and use of Big Data. In the coming years, the analysis models will also develop further and become more widely available.


Yes there is a point. What I said before means a lot of data does not mean better information. The haystack is growing very fast. Nevertheless, there are good analysis tools, data management systems that, if properly set up, can help you to see the forest through the trees. But provided that you know well what you are looking for and what you need. And that you also have the organizational structure to convert that data into value for your organization. This means that you have to start thinking about the structures, cooperation with partners and especially about your [future] customers.