Quick....how many posts do you think Facebook did per hour on average back in 2015? How many recipes, pictures of desserts and rants about Game of Thrones were posted?
If you are like me, you may be startled when you hear that it was up to 250 million per hour!
But, maybe I shouldn't be...there are over a billion active monthly users....and Instagram isn't too far behind, often hitting 100 million likes in an hour. Poor Vine....it seems small at only a million videos being played per day.
So, why does this matter?
It means that the world produces a ton of data. One report had us creating 2.5 Quintillion bytes of data each day. To put that in perspective.....it would fill 10 Million Blu-Ray discs, and if you stacked them up, it would be the height of 4 Eiffel Towers.....each day! (Thanks to VCloud news for that).
Even if this is a bit off, it still means that the world is drowning in data. And, we have not yet seen the world of IoT fully kicking in. I can imagine that once it does, these numbers will go from huge to not even making sense at all.
I first wanted to thank the New York Times for their great Op-Ed, "The Age of Post-Truth in politics" for the idea behind this blog. It was written back in 2016, but it's still relevant.
The article touched on how we are being drowned in data so badly that it causes people to not agree as to what is factual anymore. As well, it talked about how we are producing data at a speed that is so much faster than we are actually able to make sense of it:
One of my favourite quotes from the article:
"It is possible to live in a world of data but no facts. Think of how we employ weather forecasts: We understand that it is not a fact that it will be 75 degrees on Thursday, and that figure will fluctuate all the time. Weather forecasting works in a similar way to sentiment analysis, bringing data from a wide range of sensory devices, and converting this into a constantly evolving narrative about the near future."
So, what does this mean? If we are able to gather such incredibly accurate data, how are we still unable to make more sense of it? Why aren't we better at forecasting things like: the day to day weather, election results and the path of the latest hurricane?
The world of Big Data was supposed to make things simpler. With more (and better) data, we were supposed to be able to make better decisions, have society come to a better agreement on things and to improve day to day life. Instead, have all we done is allow people to better dig in to their point by allowing them to just search out the data that best proves their argument?
Facebook built one of the first Billion-dollar businesses by using data effectively. We need to start to use the data that we get now in more effective ways before the real onslaught of data from IoT comes in.....