"Yes, you have mounds of customer and usage data to analyze. Web browsing, app usage, and location data were already exploding. Adding machine and sensor data to the mix made it abundantly obvious that the existing tools were inadequate, so the technology industry responded aggressively with Hadoop, NoSQL, and other technologies, and “big data” was born. Big data and related concepts like the Internet of things and the Industrial Internet have sparked the formation of hundreds, if not thousands, of businesses and products.
In the hubbub about big data, we forgot about ‘people data’
What about the analysis and proposals that are created before we even determine what big data to capture? What about the insight that we get from big data? What about the whole supply chain of product definitions, code, marketing, and sales materials that are created day in and day out? I call this “people data.” People data consists of the files that people create, modify, publish, access, share, and deliver. People data is the intellectual property that the workflows of millions of people generate every day.
People data, like big data, is growing fast
Analysts have tried to put a number on digital data’s reach. The University of California at Berkeley made the first attempts in 2000 and 2003, estimating that 5 exabytes of information was created in 2002. University of San Diego followed up, proposing that almost 10 zettabytes of data was served by enterprises in 2008 alone, or 3 terabytes per worker. IDC has been using every statistic in their arsenal to size the “digital universe.” Its last tally estimated 2.8 zettabytes created in 2012, or 563 times what Berkeley estimated 10 years before."