Gartner asks 'is Big Data just an overhyped buzzword?'

Business Intelligence

by Claire Vanner| 11 March 2014

Industry experts debate the hype around Big Data at Gartner's BI Summit 2014.

'Big Data is just an overhyped buzzword and we will not be talking about it in 3 years' was a statement pondered by a panel of industry experts, including representatives from SAP and SAS, at Gartner's 2014 BI Summit in London yesterday.

Gartner's question about the tech trend of the moment prompted some interesting results, with responses varying from 'strongly agree' to 'strongly disagree' across the panel.

Timo Elliott, innovation evangelist at SAP, agreed it was a buzzword, but the hype was justified.

"It is a buzzword, but it has been a fantastic opportunity to talk about analytics to new audiences and there has been a spectacular rise in interest thanks to that buzzword, so I am all for embracing it and pray it is going to stick around for at least three years because the rest of the world doesn't change that fast," he said.

On the other side of the field, Mark Torr, director of SAS technology practice, disagreed that the term would still be used in three year's time.

He said: "My personal view about this is Big Data has been around forever and it will keep growing. Technology is going to change so it will move forward, but frankly it is just a buzzword, it will go away, there will be something else."

"If nothing else, there will need to be a new term so the analysts can sell the reports in three years time," he joked.
Nick Millman, MD of digital data and analytics at Accenture, told CBR at the summit that he agreed with Torr that the industry changes its terms on a regular basis.

He said: "There is generally a new term invented by the industry every few years, so it's very hard to predict when Big Data might be replaced by the new term."

Ashutosh Kulkarni, GM of data integration and data quality at Informatica, told CBR that he thinks Big Data will go the same way as the internet, as when it first started out people thought it was all hype.

"Today you just assume the internet exists, my five year old uses it without even really knowing what it is. I think that is what is going to happen," he said.

"I believe the term will stay, but it will lose its celebrity status and become something that we work with all the time and you won't even think about it."

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