Big Data

Big data has become a big buzzword in the federal government. The White House has launched a major initiative focusing on research and development of sophisticated analytics, and many agencies are already using big data to improve efficiency and citizen services.

Big data generally refers to the large amounts of unstructured information held by government and industry and the new high-powered computer programs that can derive structured meaning from it all. The term “unstructured” refers to any data that doesn’t fit neatly into a spreadsheet, such as video and audio files or information from scientific or environmental sensors.

With all the talk about big data it can be difficult to separate hype from reality. Here are five things you need to know.

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