chapter  12
4 Pages

Big data

Big data is the term that describes the ever growing amount of ‘data’ that is being collected by various disciplines, most notably genetics. This ‘glut’ of data has little form to make it a ‘content’ and ‘contextual’ value of ‘information’ and is more a gigantic pattern of ‘excess’ rather than a approachable part of an emerging whole. The use of algorithmic complexity programs for compression of data streams and theoretical uses in modeling chemical and biological processes is a major factor in managing Big Data and giving a functional tool for addressing the major problem with large data pools: too much ‘data’ and too little ‘information’. Also the type of ‘data’ derived from new techniques has to be weighed against existing ‘information’ on the resulting study. A current research project reported that a series of internal points, or nodes, in an organism have a great hierarchical value to the ‘operation’ of that organism (Northwestern University, 2013: 1). These ‘necessary’ nodes can descript the whole process without ‘monitoring’ the ‘actions’ of the components of that organism (Northwestern University, 2013: 2). Similar findings about ‘internal’ connectivity in organisms and the ‘behavior’ of such organisms was clearly detailed the various ‘feedback’ theory groups of the 1940s and 1950s, including Wieners ‘Cybernetics’, and to a lesser degree, Shannon’s Information Theory, not to mention Canon’s concept of ‘homeostasis’ in living systems that was done in the 1920s (Hayes, 2011: 78-81). Much of these ‘new’ research programs are just extensions of older studies,

such as ‘systems theory’ such as Ludwig von Bertalanffy’s ‘General System Theory’ (1928) for biological processes (Wikipedia, ‘Systems Theory’, 2013: 3-4). Systems theory seems to be a subset of cybernetics theory in that cybernetics was engineering related and was a feedback-oriented system that was based on external interacting feedback loops that produced finite results (Wikipedia, ‘Systems Theory’, 2013: 8). Bertalanffy’s work is pre-dated by the Russian Alexander Bogdanov’s three volume work that was published in Russia between 1912 and 1917 (Wikipedia, ‘Systems Theory’, 2013: 8). My research into feedback systems can be found in my unpublished manuscript titled Modeling Complexity in Molecular Systems: A Revised Edition (2013) that uses various techniques from the engineering field to feedback systems found in biological processes (Tice, 2013). These techniques, along with some advances in development in graph theory by the author, have added significant methodology to the analysis and modeling of aspects to Big Data. By using such effective techniques as tools for managing and the analysis of Big Data can the situation be addressed in a productive manner without falling into the void of ‘unproductive’ data collections (Ovide, 2013: 1).