Are we ever going to get tired of comparing data to water? We heard of trickling data, data waterfalls, now people are talking about data lakes and guess what – I am going to talk about a data ocean. Yes, I am referring to the notion of the largest bodies of data in the world, comprising of a multitude of sources and consumers across many, many data domains. But what I really want to focus on is what these oceans currently look like, what they will look like in the future, and how we should prepare ourselves to maximize their value.
What makes water so powerful is its combined force, its chemistry and its consistent and predictable behavior. Our current way of handling data is more like trying to mix water with oil, mud, rocks, milk, sand and lots of other stuff. That is far from the elegant nature of water.
While each entity in the world feels the need to derive its own chemistry of data, the truth is that the nature of data is as pure as water. We perceive data as murky and hence treat it as such. Therefore it molds, by our own actions, and becomes difficult to manage.
What am I saying? We have no common (agreed) perceptions, models or governance on data. As our data management models mature, we will see more harmony in data. The essence of the simplicity in data has always been there and the notion of a data lake, and a data ocean, never caught me by surprise.
To truly “see” these bodies of data, we need to ensure we are able to view them as such. True “global” harmonization of perceptions on datasets is key to drive governance, management and hence data chemistry.
The sooner and broader you can tune in your organization and your business partners to mature and harmonize data perceptions – the better prepared you will be for Teneo Vulgo.
I predict a world where ALL data flows through a central data delivery framework, probably centered around a few major providers. In this world entities which have prepared and invested in orchestration power over data will hold the advantage. This is not a world where data is fair (when has it ever been fair), but rather a world where data is managed to serve those who have the strongest ability to influence and exploit it.
Think about data tsunamis, data storms as well as data seaside holiday homes, data sanitation systems and data feeding into our daily life. The power of information is only starting to emerge. For me, the famous saying comes to mind: may you live interesting times…