By Peter Vescuso

The world is becoming more connected and more interactive, driven by two mega trends: people increasingly connected via mobile devices and the physical world connected via the Internet of Things. Seventy percent of the global population have a mobile subscription (4.9 billion people, according to Ericsson(link is external)) – making connection to the Internet more ubiquitous than ever. At the same time, inexpensive sensors are being deployed on everything from cows to light bulbs (50 billion devices by 2020, according to Cisco(link is external)), bringing the physical and digital worlds onto one network.


Defining Fast Data

As a result of this connectivity, everything and everyone is generating endless streams of data, driving the scale and growth of data at unprecedented rates. Fast data is the streaming data, or “live” data, generated by people (interactions, location) and by sensors (e.g. the state of a device or thing). To date, much of the investment in Big Data has been focused on analytics once the data has been saved. But fast data represents a fundamentally new opportunity: know what’s in your data and act on it now. How fast? As fast as you need it, in a millisecond if you like.

Fast Data Pipeline

Applications that need to analyze and react in real time rely on new distributed database technologies to build fast data pipelines that:

  1. Ingest streaming data at volume and scale.
  2. Analyze the stream in real time and combine the insights learned with stateful system information (via transactions) to make a decision and take action.
  3. Following the real-time analysis and action, export the fast data to downstream systems.

Fast data applications are a necessity in today’s data-driven business environments. Users expect systems to be smart, know who and where they are, and what they want. And they expect them to be fast, operating at the speed of human interaction. Use fast data to increase success rates, tailor your services to increase customer loyalty, capture event triggers as they happen, and communicate the right offer to the right subscriber, as events occur.

This is a re-post courtesy of VoltDB. To view the VoltDB blog, please click here.