In information technology, big data consists of data sets that grow so large they become unwieldy to work with using available database management tools. How big is big? It depends on when you need to reconsider data management options – in some cases it may be 100 Gigabytes, in others, as great as 100 Terabytes.
Does more data necessarily mean more insight?
The pro-argument is that larger data sets allow for greater incidences of patterns, facts, and insights. Moreover, with enough data, you can discover trends using simple counting that are otherwise undiscoverable in small data using sophisticated statistical methods.
On the other hand, while this is perfectly valid in theory, for many businesses the key barrier is not the ability to draw insights from large volumes of data; it is asking the right questions for which insight is needed.
The ability to provide answers does depend on the question being asked and the relevance of the big-data set to that question. How can one generalize to an assumption that more data will always mean more insight? It isn’t always the answer that’s important, but the questions that are key.