Taking a big fall?

Gartner: Big Data hype set to burst soon

Gartner analyst Svetlana Sicular says that the Big Data bubble is set to burst as organisations struggle to make practical use of the technology.

In a blog post titled ‘Big Data is Falling into the Trough of Disillusionment’, Sicular suggests that Big Data may be at the peak of Gartner’s famous ‘hype cycle’, which illustrates the standard lifecycle of new technologies before becoming part of everyday use.

Her argument, though unclear, appears to be that many organisations blazing a trail into Big Data have found it less useful than expected. Sicular’s clients “have fascinating ideas, but they are disappointed with a difficulty of figuring out reliable solutions” - struggling to link unstructured data and carry out complex queries.

Sicular is far from the first to express cynicism towards the Big Data buzzword. Many in the industry are aware it is frequently used to repackage ideas and products related to business intelligence and analytics. CTO of Big Data startup Continuuity, Jonathan Gray, admitted to JAXenter that “99% of the use cases out there are really medium data”.

Ever ahead of the game, satirical comic Dilbert was already poking fun at the Big Data hype last July.

But job trends on Indeed.com suggest that employers are keener than ever for developers with Hadoop and Big Data skills. If Big Data is about to dive into the trough of disillusionment, Sicular’s anecdotes may be the metaphorical canary in the coalmine - perhaps indicative of a rejection of the buzzword on a larger scale later this year.

Photo by Jeff Kubina.

Elliot Bentley

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