Big data, analytics as a service: Likely boom on deck

Data outside of corporate firewalls will require aggregators and service providers to package it so it can be used by enterprises. Big data as a service isn't too far behind.
Written by Larry Dignan, Contributor

Data analytics and visualization as a service is likely to be the vehicle that makes big data commoditized and consumable for Corporate America in the next two or three years.

That's one takeaway via Adrian Gardner, Director of IT & Communications Directorate, CIO, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center. Gardiner spoke at Temple University's Big Data conference last week in Philadelphia. Disclosure: The conference was closed to the press, but I'm an advisor to Temple's MIS program. I interviewed Gardner following his talk.

Adrian Gardner, Goddard Flight Center CIO

Gardner approaches big data as both a provider and a consumer. NASA has opened up its global change, planetary system and geospatial data for government, private sector and academic use. NASA also has a big data challenge as it tries and navigates information from its various programs.

Coming up: TechLines Big Data Roundtable, Oct. 4

What's missing in current big data uses is largely commoditization and packaging, he argued. "Companies will have to morph for big data," said Gardner. "The companies that flow with information will survive, but we're going to be overwhelmed."

Gardner also added that this overwhelming level of data---both behind and beyond corporate firewalls---will result in competitors partnering to share information and inevitably commodity data services.

Data analysis as a service is starting today, noted Gardner, but the next two to three years will see the niche swell. Indeed, companies like Tidemark are already getting there.

Here's why big data as a service is likely:

  • There's not enough talent---data scientists, analysts and the like---to do big data at every company.
  • Companies are slammed with internal data.
  • Outside data aggregation is out of scope currently, but won't be in a few years.
  • Players will include players like Lexis Nexis, Dun & Bradstreet as well as tech vendors who will suck in data and offer it as a service. Salesforce, IBM and others are also likely service providers.

Add it up and it's likely that data streams outside of the corporate firewall will have to be aggregated and packaged by third party providers to allow for easy integration.

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