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Cloud expert explains big data value, pain points

Many important considerations surround the intersection of cloud computing and big data analytics. The two technologies have been pushed together by historical circumstance, emerging within the same narrow time period. Of course, recent years have not been kind to corporate budgets, with the lingering effects of the financial crisis making it difficult for leaders to commit to new strategies. IT directors who lobby hard for both the cloud and big data will likely find the effort worth it in the end, however. Adding both new tech approaches could be extremely beneficial, as long as leaders think ahead and create plans to support their ambitions.

Combined tech priorities
Adopting both big data and cloud computing and combining them is a revolutionary IT approach, one with a wide variety of potential positive effects for adopters. According to cloud expert Rick Blaisdell, companies that overcome the challenges and match their cloud strategies with big data storage and use could be in line for specific and meaningful performance boosts. Taking results from a McKinsey industry survey, he cited better segmentation of the consumer base and effective predictive forecasting as some of these improvements, along with confident and unbiased recommendations based on information rather than supposition. The cloud's scalable nature and revolutionary pricing model make it a strong part of these plans.

Of course, the cloud and big data combination is not yet ubiquitous. Despite the benefits, many companies have simply been slow to commit to it. Blaisdell advanced a theory about what happened. He stated that moving data around in the cloud is difficult. Data reserves are bigger than ever, meaning traditional communications infrastructures could quickly become overwhelmed. The radical speed that has become a hallmark of cloud computing could be seriously compromised by any bottlenecks or failures to access data. This bodes ill for firms that try to move into cloud computing without enterprise data replication technology.

Making the transfer
There are now analytics programs that function in a cloud environment. This breakthrough has produced the need to send information back from the cloud. Getting it there in the first place, however, is still a challenge. This is where replication tools come in. Firms can now trust these automated options to take their raw figures from the various receptors that gathered them to the cloud. Combining new and old data, fast streams of information and massive historical archives alike, represents a new roadmap to success for big data users.