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The Human Face of Big Data, a Book Review
Big Data is a big topic with a lot of diversity

My copy of the new book The Human Face of Big Data created by Rick Smolan and Jennifer Erwitt arrived yesterday compliments of EMC (the lead sponsor). In addition to EMC, the other sponsors of the book are Cisco, VMware, FedEx, Originate and Tableau software.

To say this is a big book would be an understatement, then again, big data is a big topic with a lot of diversity if you open your eyes and think in a pragmatic way, which once you open and see the pages you will see. This is physically a big book (11x 14 inches) with lots of pictures, texts, stories, factoids and thought stimulating information of the many facets and dimensions of big data across 224 pages.

Image of the Human Face of Big Data Book

While Big Data as a buzzword and industry topic theme might be new, along with some of the related technologies, techniques and focus areas, other as aspects have been around for some time. Big data means many things to various people depending on their focus or areas of interest ranging from analytics to images, videos and other big files. A common theme is the fact that there is no such thing as an information or data recession, and that people and data are living longer, getting larger, and we are all addicted to information for various reasons.

Big data needs to be protected and preserved as it has value, or its value can increase over time as new ways to leverage it are discovered which also leads to changing data access and life cycle patterns. With many faces, facets and areas of interests applying to various spheres of influence, big data is not limited to programmatic, scientific, analytical or research, yet there are many current and use cases in those areas.

Big data is not limited to videos for security surveillance, entertainment, telemetry, audio, social media, energy exploration, geosciences, seismic, forecasting or simulation, yet those have been areas of focus for years. Some big data files or objects are millions of bytes (MBytes), billion of bytes (GBytes) or trillion of bytes (TBytes) in size that when put into file systems or object repositories, add up to Exabytes (EB - 1000 TBytes) or Zettabytes (ZB - 1000 EBs). Now if you think those numbers are far-fetched, simply look back to when you thought a TByte, GByte let alone a MByte was big or far-fetched future. Remember, there is no such thing as a data or information recession, people and data are living longer and getting larger.

Big data is more than hadoop, map reduce, SAS or other programmatic and analytical focused tool, solution or platform, yet those all have been and will be significant focus areas in the future. This also means big data is more than data warehouse, data mart, data mining, social media and event or activity log processing which also are main parts have continued roles going forward. Just as there are large MByte, GByte or TByte sized files or objects, there are also millions and billions of smaller files, objects or pieces of information that are part of the big data universe.

You can take a narrow, product, platform, tool, process, approach, application, sphere of influence or domain of interest view towards big data, or a pragmatic view of the various faces and facets. Of course you can also spin everything that is not little-data to be big data and that is where some of the BS about big data comes from. Big data is not exclusive to the data scientist, researchers, academia, governments or analysts, yet there are areas of focus where those are important. What this means is that there are other areas of big data that do not need a data science, computer science, mathematical, statistician, Doctoral Phd or other advanced degree or training, in other words big data is for everybody.

Cover image of Human Face of Big Data Book

Back to how big this book is in both physical size, as well as rich content. Note the size of The Human Face of Big Data book in the adjacent image that for comparison purposes has a copy of my last book Cloud and Virtual Data Storage Networking (CRC), along with a 2.5 inch hard disk drive (HDD) and a growler. The Growler is from Lift Bridge Brewery (Stillwater, MN), after all, reading a big book about big data can create the need for a big beer to address a big thirst for information ;).

The Human Face of Big Data is more than a coffee table or picture book as it is full of with information, factoids and perspectives how information and data surround us every day. Check out the image below and note the 2.5 inch HDD sitting on the top right hand corner of the page above the text. Open up a copy of The Human Face of Big Data and you will see examples of how data and information are all around us, and our dependence upon it.

A look inside the book The Humand Face of Big Data image

Book Details:
Copyright 2012
Against All Odds Productions
ISBN 978-1-4549-0827-2
Hardcover 224 pages, 11 x 0.9 x 14 inches
4.8 pounds, English

There is also an applet to view related videos and images found in the book at HumanFaceofBigData.com/viewer in addition to other material on the companion site www.HumanFacesofBigData.com.

Get your copy of The Human Face of Big Data at Amazon.com by clicking here or at other venues including by clicking on the following image (Amazon.com).

Some added and related material:
Little data, big data and very big data (VBD) or big BS?
How many degrees separate you and your information?
Hardware, Software, what about Valueware?
Changing Lifecycles and Data Footprint Reduction (Data doesnt have to lose value over time)
Garbage data in, garbage information out, big data or big garbage?
Industry adoption vs. industry deployment, is there a difference?
Is There a Data and I/O Activity Recession?
Industry trend: People plus data are aging and living longer
Supporting IT growth demand during economic uncertain times
No Such Thing as an Information Recession

For those who can see big data in a broad and pragmatic way, perhaps using the visualization aspect this book brings forth the idea that there are and will be many opportunities. Then again for those who have a narrow or specific view of what is or is not big data, there is so much of it around and various types along with focus areas you too will see some benefits.

Do you want to play in or be part of a big data puddle, pond, or lake, or sail and explore the oceans of big data and all the different aspects found in, under and around those bigger broader bodies of water.

Bottom line, this is a great book and read regardless of if you are involved with data and information related topics or themes, the format and design lend itself to any audience. Broaden your horizons, open your eyes, ears and thinking to the many facets and faces of big data that are all around us by getting your copy of The Human Face of Big Data (Click here to go to Amazon for your copy) book.

Ok, nuff said.

Cheers gs

Greg Schulz - Author Cloud and Virtual Data Storage Networking (CRC Press, 2011), The Green and Virtual Data Center (CRC Press, 2009), and Resilient Storage Networks (Elsevier, 2004)

twitter @storageio

All Comments, (C) and (TM) belong to their owners/posters, Other content (C) Copyright 2006-2013 StorageIO All Rights Reserved

Cheers Gs

Read the original blog entry...

About Greg Schulz
Greg Schulz is founder of the Server and StorageIO (StorageIO) Group, an IT industry analyst and consultancy firm. Greg has worked with various server operating systems along with storage and networking software tools, hardware and services. Greg has worked as a programmer, systems administrator, disaster recovery consultant, and storage and capacity planner for various IT organizations. He has worked for various vendors before joining an industry analyst firm and later forming StorageIO.

In addition to his analyst and consulting research duties, Schulz has published over a thousand articles, tips, reports and white papers and is a sought after popular speaker at events around the world. Greg is also author of the books Resilient Storage Network (Elsevier) and The Green and Virtual Data Center (CRC). His blog is at www.storageioblog.com and he can also be found on twitter @storageio.

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Cloud Expo - Cloud Looms Large on SYS-CON.TV

Cloud Expo 2013 East Opening Keynote by IBM
In this Cloud Expo Keynote, Danny Sabbah, CTO & General Manager, Next Generation Platform, will detail the critical architectural considerations and success factors organizations must internalize to successfully implement, optimize and innovate using next generation architectures.
Lisa Larson, Vice President of Enterprise Cloud Solutions of Rackspace Hosting Live From New York City
In the old world of IT, if you didn't have hardware capacity or the budget to buy more, your project was dead in the water. Budget constraints can leave some of the best, most creative and most ingenious innovations on the cutting room floor. It's a true dilemma for developers and innovators – why spend the time creating, when a project could be abandoned in a blink? That was the old world. In the new world of IT, developers rule. They have access to resources they can spin up instantly. A hybrid cloud ignites innovation and empowers developers to focus on what they need. A hybrid cloud blends the best of all worlds, public cloud, private cloud and dedicated servers to fit the needs of developers and offer the ideal environment for each app and workload without the constraints of a one-size-fits-all cloud.

Keynote: Driving Cloud Innovation: SSDs Change Cloud Storage Paradigm
Cloud is a transformational shift in computing that can have a powerful effect on enterprise IT when designed correctly and used to its full potential. Join Citrix in a discussion that centers on building, connecting and empowering users with cloud services and hear examples of how enterprises are solving real-world business challenges with an architecture and solution purpose-built for the cloud.

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Many organizations want to expand upon the IaaS foundation to deliver cloud services in all forms—software, mobility, infrastructure and IT. Understanding the strategy, planning process and tools for this transformation will help catalyze changes in the way the business operates and deliver real value. Join us to learn about the new ITaaS model and how to begin the transformation.

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The Internet of Things (IoT) is growing rapidly by extending current technologies, products and networks. By 2020, Cisco estimates there will be 50 billion connected devices. Gartner has forecast revenues of over $300 billion, just to IoT suppliers. Now is the time to figure out how you’ll make money – not just create innovative products. With hundreds of new products and companies jumping into the IoT fray every month, there’s no shortage of innovation. Despite this, McKinsey/VisionMobile data...
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SYS-CON Events announced today that Alert Logic, Inc., the leading provider of Security-as-a-Service solutions for the cloud, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Alert Logic, Inc., provides Security-as-a-Service for on-premises, cloud, and hybrid infrastructures, delivering deep security insight and continuous protection for customers at a lower cost than traditional security solutions. Ful...
Just over a week ago I received a long and loud sustained applause for a presentation I delivered at this year’s Cloud Expo in Santa Clara. I was extremely pleased with the turnout and had some very good conversations with many of the attendees. Over the next few days I had many more meaningful conversations and was not only happy with the results but also learned a few new things. Here is everything I learned in those three days distilled into three short points.
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The buzz continues for cloud, data analytics and the Internet of Things (IoT) and their collective impact across all industries. But a new conversation is emerging - how do companies use industry disruption and technology enablers to lead in markets undergoing change, uncertainty and ambiguity? Organizations of all sizes need to evolve and transform, often under massive pressure, as industry lines blur and merge and traditional business models are assaulted and turned upside down. In this new da...
In his General Session at DevOps Summit, Asaf Yigal, Co-Founder & VP of Product at Logz.io, explored the value of Kibana 4 for log analysis and provided a hands-on tutorial on how to set up Kibana 4 and get the most out of Apache log files. He examined three use cases: IT operations, business intelligence, and security and compliance. Asaf Yigal is co-founder and VP of Product at log analytics software company Logz.io. In the past, he was co-founder of social-trading platform Currensee, which...
The Internet of Everything is re-shaping technology trends–moving away from “request/response” architecture to an “always-on” Streaming Web where data is in constant motion and secure, reliable communication is an absolute necessity. As more and more THINGS go online, the challenges that developers will need to address will only increase exponentially. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Todd Greene, Founder & CEO of PubNub, exploreed the current state of IoT connectivity and review key trends and t...
Too often with compelling new technologies market participants become overly enamored with that attractiveness of the technology and neglect underlying business drivers. This tendency, what some call the “newest shiny object syndrome” is understandable given that virtually all of us are heavily engaged in technology. But it is also mistaken. Without concrete business cases driving its deployment, IoT, like many other technologies before it, will fade into obscurity.
In today's enterprise, digital transformation represents organizational change even more so than technology change, as customer preferences and behavior drive end-to-end transformation across lines of business as well as IT. To capitalize on the ubiquitous disruption driving this transformation, companies must be able to innovate at an increasingly rapid pace. Traditional approaches for driving innovation are now woefully inadequate for keeping up with the breadth of disruption and change facin...
The Internet of Things is clearly many things: data collection and analytics, wearables, Smart Grids and Smart Cities, the Industrial Internet, and more. Cool platforms like Arduino, Raspberry Pi, Intel's Galileo and Edison, and a diverse world of sensors are making the IoT a great toy box for developers in all these areas. In this Power Panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists discussed what things are the most important, which will have the most profound...
With all the incredible momentum behind the Internet of Things (IoT) industry, it is easy to forget that not a single CEO wakes up and wonders if “my IoT is broken.” What they wonder is if they are making the right decisions to do all they can to increase revenue, decrease costs, and improve customer experience – effectively the same challenges they have always had in growing their business. The exciting thing about the IoT industry is now these decisions can be better, faster, and smarter. Now ...
I recently attended and was a speaker at the 4th International Internet of @ThingsExpo at the Santa Clara Convention Center. I also had the opportunity to attend this event last year and I wrote a blog from that show talking about how the “Enterprise Impact of IoT” was a key theme of last year’s show. I was curious to see if the same theme would still resonate 365 days later and what, if any, changes I would see in the content presented.
Apps and devices shouldn't stop working when there's limited or no network connectivity. Learn how to bring data stored in a cloud database to the edge of the network (and back again) whenever an Internet connection is available. In his session at 17th Cloud Expo, Ben Perlmutter, a Sales Engineer with IBM Cloudant, demonstrated techniques for replicating cloud databases with devices in order to build offline-first mobile or Internet of Things (IoT) apps that can provide a better, faster user e...
Microservices are a very exciting architectural approach that many organizations are looking to as a way to accelerate innovation. Microservices promise to allow teams to move away from monolithic "ball of mud" systems, but the reality is that, in the vast majority of organizations, different projects and technologies will continue to be developed at different speeds. How to handle the dependencies between these disparate systems with different iteration cycles? Consider the "canoncial problem"...
Culture is the most important ingredient of DevOps. The challenge for most organizations is defining and communicating a vision of beneficial DevOps culture for their organizations, and then facilitating the changes needed to achieve that. Often this comes down to an ability to provide true leadership. As a CIO, are your direct reports IT managers or are they IT leaders? The hard truth is that many IT managers have risen through the ranks based on their technical skills, not their leadership ab...
There are over 120 breakout sessions in all, with Keynotes, General Sessions, and Power Panels adding to three days of incredibly rich presentations and content. Join @ThingsExpo conference chair Roger Strukhoff (@IoT2040), June 7-9, 2016 in New York City, for three days of intense 'Internet of Things' discussion and focus, including Big Data's indespensable role in IoT, Smart Grids and Industrial Internet of Things, Wearables and Consumer IoT, as well as (new) IoT's use in Vertical Markets.
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There is little doubt that Big Data solutions will have an increasing role in the Enterprise IT mainstream over time. Get a jump on that rapidly evolving trend at Big Data Expo, which we are introducing in June at
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@CloudExpo Blogs
The pervasiveness of software is driving the dynamics of business transactions everywhere. We live in a time of a highly competitive and truly global economy where the question being answered among businesses now is “who can innovate the fastest?” To keep pace with the increasing velocity of software updated being introduced to the market, enterprises embrace DevOps and Continuous Delivery practices, along with implementing a fully-automated software delivery process, in order to keep up with the demand to go faster.
Certain CIOs for incomprehensible reasons keep off their cloud transformation projects several key IT disciplines including Enterprise Architecture (EA), IT Service Management (ITSM) and most importantly Project Management. Do they consider them obsolete? useless? irrelevant? ITaaS Strategist Philippe Abdoulaye provides 7 keys that will boost PMOs and make them pivotal to any ITaaS (or cloud-related) transformation projects.
Does your API suck? Okay, that one needs a little explanation. If you've developed an API, it exposes some functionality to users. It might suck to learn. The documentation might be unclear and the function signatures counter-intuitive. It might suck to use, doing a lot of things, but never particularly what you really need, right now. After a great deal of working with companies developing new API functionality, and also building out demo material from publicly available APIs (starting with the thought "this should be easy ...") I have developed some opinions on the subject. Just like a...
Intuit uses deep-data analytics to gain a 360-degree view of its TurboTax application's users’ behavior and preferences for rapid applications improvements. The next BriefingsDirect big-data innovation case study highlights how Intuit uses deep-data analytics to gain a 360-degree view of its TurboTax application's users’ behavior and preferences. Such visibility allows for rapid applications improvements and enables the TurboTax user experience to be tailored to a highly detailed degree.
Test-driven development (TDD) has been around for a while now. Behavior-driven development (BDD), a comparably recent methodology, emerged from the practice of TDD and could reasonably be called a narrower application of TDD. The TDD process allows a developer to use a failing unit test to express a shortcoming of the system. The next step is to modify the production code to get the failing test to pass without making existing tests fail. BDD more or less takes this same concept and adds the idea that the tests should be written in easy-to-understand language describing the problem domain,...
Anonymous’s self-organization gives it power, resilience, and above all, agility – in fact, far more than traditional organizations with vastly superior resources. On the other hand, its efforts are often capricious, and once a particular target loses its appeal, Anonymous’s attention tends to wander elsewhere. As the war against Daesh (formerly ISIS or ISIL) heats up following the terrorist attacks in Paris, the hacker group Anonymous has taken a leadership position in the global effort. Its battleground isn't in Europe, the Middle East, or any other location on earth. Anonymous is battling ...
Just over a week ago I received a long and loud sustained applause for a presentation I delivered at this year’s Cloud Expo in Santa Clara. I was extremely pleased with the turnout and had some very good conversations with many of the attendees. Over the next few days I had many more meaningful conversations and was not only happy with the results but also learned a few new things. Here is everything I learned in those three days distilled into three short points.
Naturally, new and exciting technologies and trends like software defined networking, the Internet of Things and the cloud tend to get the lion’s share of attention these days, including when it comes to security. However, it’s important to never forget that at the center of it all is still the enterprise network. And as evidenced by the ever-expanding landslide of data breaches that could have been prevented or at least their impact lessened by better practicing network security basics, it’s obvious there is a need to keep network security best practices front and center. Thus, what follows...
One of the most important tenets of digital transformation is that it’s customer-driven. In fact, the only reason technology is involved at all is because today’s customers demand technology-based interactions with the companies they do business with. It’s no surprise, therefore, that we at Intellyx agree with Patrick Maes, CTO, ANZ Bank, when he said, “the fundamental element in digital transformation is extreme customer centricity.” So true – but note the insightful twist that Maes added to the customer-driven digital mantra: extreme. In the context of digital transformation, then,...
Cybersecurity is a complex field, and with laws varying across states and countries, keeping cloud usage compliant can become a real headache for enterprise security decision-makers. As regulations continue to lag behind the rapid pace of technological advancements, many IT security professionals turn to the expertise of cybersecurity lawyers, who not only understand the ambiguities of the law, but are also able to secure and protect their employers’ interests in the case of a breach. Cybersecurity attorneys are not necessary, however, for everyday operations. While they play an important role...
Using any programming framework to the fullest extent possible first requires an understanding of advanced software architecture concepts. While writing a little client-side JavaScript does not necessarily require as much consideration when designing a scalable software architecture, the evolution of tools like Node.js means that you could be facing large code bases that must be easy to maintain.
My father used to tell me that the key to success in life was to look people in the eye and give them a firm handshake. But the art of the handshake seems to have died in my generation. I grew up in the era of high fives, forearm smashes and fist pumps. I played baseball, so there were also a lot of butt pats, (but let’s not go into that). It seems like the importance of handshakes and eye-to-eye contact have diminished even further in my daughter’s generation. Every day I watch her friends look down at their smartphones while texting each other “omg hi bff” as they greet each other at school ...
Bluenose empowers SaaS businesses to proactively manage and engage their customers through our insight-driven toolkit and built-in play books. We rely on big data analytics and trended analyses to forecast where a customer relationship is going.
So you want to centralize your enterprise? Smart choice – but it’s important to take some factors into consideration if you want to have success. Developers need to ensure representation from each geographic location; understand current development processes and tools; and comprehend the biggest challenges. Furthermore, you need to be aware of, and sensitive to, your project teams' preferences for existing tools and aversion to change.
You may have heard about the pets vs. cattle discussion – a reference to the way application servers are deployed in the cloud native world. If an application server goes down it can simply be dropped from the mix and a new server added in its place. The practice so far has mostly been applied to application deployments. Management software on the other hand is treated in a very special manner. Dedicated resources are set aside to run the management software components and several alerting systems are deployed to watch the health of those components. Administrators spend hours each day managi...
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Past SYS-CON Events
    Cloud Expo West

    Cloud Expo East

    Cloud Expo West

    Virtualization Expo West
    Cloud Expo Europe

    Cloud Expo East

    Virtualization Expo East
    Cloud Expo West

    Virtualization Expo West
    GovIT Expo
    Cloud Expo Europe

Cloud Expo 2011 Allstar Conference Faculty












Dell Boomi


Layer 7 Tech



What The Enterprise IT World Says About Cloud Expo
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