It’s here: IDC’s newest, highly anticipated report!
Data Age 2025: The Evolution of Data to Life-Critical is long. In fact, it’s very long.
We’re going to summarize the most critical points of the white paper for you.
First, the report lists 5 keys trends:
The evolution of data from business background to life-critical
Data has been resituated from the back burner to center stage, playing a key role in our everyday lives.
Embedded systems and the Internet of Things (IoT)
A growing network of digital devices – also known as the Internet of Things – continues to expand exponentially, generating unprecedented amounts of data.
Mobile and real-time data
Increasing connectivity and subsequent reliance on data requires systems to work faster and data to be available anywhere, anytime, in real time.
Cognitive/artificial intelligence (AI) systems that change the landscape
Artificial intelligence is no longer the substance of science fiction novels. Massive amounts of data allow for new technologies – for example, cognitive systems – that can process, interpret, analyze, and act on this data.
Security as a critical foundation
New data from new sources permits new vulnerabilities. Our lives depend on data, but our wellbeing also depends on securing this data to protect ourselves, our devices, and our assets.
Further, IDC has divided the evolution of computing into 3 distinct eras (Data Age, Page 6), where the accessibility and essentiality of data is proportionate to the devices available and their level of connectivity:
1st Platform (Before 1980): Data lives in “dumb machines” (datacenters and mainframes) with little power and is used primarily for business.
2nd Platform (1980 – 2000): Data is distributed across a growing network of devices following the rise of the personal computer. Storage capacity is used for entertainment.
3rd Platform (2000 – present): Data storage expands from hardware into cloud infrastructure. Data is increasingly essential to all facets of live including business, personal, and social interactions.
Data is not only important or significant anymore. It is a necessary, vital, and essential component to our daily lives and routines.
Think of a pizza.
Before, data was the mushrooms; a little sprinkled here and there, but just a topping, an addition to the whole, rather than an essential ingredient. Those who didn’t like mushrooms, didn’t order them on their pizza, and wouldn’t miss out for lack of the topping. Those who added mushrooms to their pizza benefitted from added flavor and a more complex combination of ingredients. Arguably, life was not better or worse, regardless of whether mushrooms topped the pizza or not.
Now, data is the tomato sauce. True Neapolitan pizza is not authentic without 3 essential components: the dough (baked into flat pie), the tomato sauce, and the cheese. The sauce lurks underneath the melted mozzarella, holding it all together and offering a robust, underlying flavor. Without sauce, a pizza is just cheesy bread and leaves much to be desired in our overall dining experience.
The evolution of data in our daily lives is similar. IDC has thrown the word “critical” into their report willy-nilly:
Data has become critical to all aspects of human life over the course of the past 30 years; it’s changed how we’re educated and entertained, and it informs the way we experience people, business, and the wider world around us. (Data Age, Page 2)
For the full report, click here.