Are you a data novice? Do you find yourself nodding along but not ly understanding what people are saying? Not to worry – here are all the data-related terms you need to know.
As we gradually move (or are dragged kicking and screaming) into Industry 4.0, we can no longer afford to ‘play dumb’ when it comes to data.
Much like we taught our parents how to use Facebook, so too must you teach yourself about encryption, cloud computing and the internet of things.
But where do you st? How do you tell your algorithms from your zip drives? How do you begin to wade th the m of data terminology that is available at the click of a button?
Let’s begin with the basics.
This is information that has been converted into another form to be processed or ysed.
This refers to the vast amounts of structured and unstructured data that can come from a myriad of sources. It incorporates the ‘three Vs’: volume, variety and velocity, and can be measured in petabytes or exabytes (a hell of a lot of information, in other words). Small data can be managed more easily, tying in with the idea presented by Allen Bonde that “g data is for machines; small data is for people”.
This is content that can be freely accessed, used, edited and distributed anywhere, by anyone, at any time. The Open Definition was introduced in 2005 and promotes the spirit of interoperality, where no technical or legal barriers to this data exist.
As the name suggests, this is a digital repository where inesses store their data. A hashing system may be used to make data easily searchable, so that different company depments can each other’s content. Data warehousing is the process of this storage, which is used in everyday applications such as booking flights and witrawing from an ATM.
A subset of the data warehouse, this is a store of data used by a picular within a company, such as the sales team. In contrast to a central archive, data ms target a specific need or purpose. Data isation is the management of such data.
Companies can mine the information gathered from raw data and yse it to better inform future iness decisions. This requires complex database software such as Microsoft SQL Server to form predictive ytics. If this seems like jargon to you, a simple example lies in supermarkets, where information is garnered from customer loyalty ds to define a target market for future products.
This is a facility containing a large number of neted computers used for storing, processing and distributing large amounts of data. It houses IT equipment such as servers, routers and firewalls, as well as necessary infrastructure for the building such as power supplies, backup generators and ventilation systems. As the focal point of critical IT operations, data centres are the beating he of a iness.
A procedure, or set of rules, for solving a picular problem
The use of maths, statistics and computer programming to discover relet patterns in recorded information
Application program interface – a set of s on how to access and build web-based software applications
Artificial intelligence – the creation of computing machines that can simulate human intelligence
A Google data storage system that manages the company’s core services, such as Search and Maps
The statistical ysis of human characteristics, both physiological and behavioural
A temporary store of data, used in web browsers to save frequently accessed web pages
A company that offers telecommunication services, such as Vodafone or BT
Image: Dmitriy Karelin/Shutterstock
In telecoms, this is the p of the net th which data pes between two points.
‘The cloud’ is also a buzzword for the internet, referring to the software and services that can be accessed online, rather than just from your computer
The delivery of hosted services over the internet, which falls under three categories:
Public: Online services delivered to the general
Private: Services made available only to a single organisation
Hybrid: A mixture of te and cloud services for greater flexility
The practice of tely owned servers renting out space in a data centre
The provision of proper ventilation to ensure data equipment and processes remain at the optimum temperature
A strategic plan that enables a iness to retain or resume critical functions after a negative incident has occurred, such as a cyberattack
A distributed denial-of-service attack is the flooding of a website with traffic, potentially causing it to crash or shut down
Distributed file system
An application to allow clients to rtely access data stored on the server
The conversion of data into code to prevent unauthorised access. This practice has made the s in recent months, due to recent WhatsApp policies
Giga is derived from the Greek for giant, which is apt as it equals 1bn bytes of computer data storage. A gigat has 1bn ts of information, usually used in descring telecoms technology
General Data Protection Regulation – a European Commission cy regulation that will come into effect on 25 May 2018, imposing harsher penalties for non-compliance with data protection standards
A free ava-based program under the Apache software library that allows for the processing of large data sets across a distributed computer net
Standing for Internet Protocol, this is a number igned to a piece of ware, such as a computer, which identifies the sender or receiver of online information
The internet of things is the interconnected system of computer devices; everyday objects that transfer data via the internet. The industrial internet of things (IIoT) is the use of this technology in the manufacturing industry
Internet service provider – exactly what it says on the tin
A popular programming language used by developers to create web content and smphone applications
You might have guessed this one – a delay in the transfer of data. Also known as that buffering symbol that turns you into a gigantic ball of rage
One megabyte equals 8 megats. Megabytes refer to computer storage and mry, whereas megat is used to describe internet connection sd
Data that describes other data. This information is used by search engines to filter th doents and generate appropriate matches
Open Compute Project
A Facebook-led initiative, this is a community-based organisation that shares gns of data centre products with other members of the IT industry in a d to improve infrastructure and boost innovation
A computer program with a source code that can be modified to suit specific needs. Open source software promotes collaborative efforts, encouraging programmers to make their own freely available
Platform-as-a-service – a cloud computing that allows developers to manage online applications
Power usage effectiveness – a ratio to measure the energy efficiency of a data centre
Software-as-a-service – a software distribution that allows a service provider to deliver applications to a customer via the internet
Net technology that enables engineers to manage net behaviour th open interfaces, controlling data traffic without touching individual switches
The core component of a computer program that is readable by humans
An electromagnetic archive. Data storage devices can be rvable and connected to the computer via an input/output setting, such as a USB stick
Image: Andrii Zastrozhnov/Shutterstock
Made famous by Netflix, this is a technique for transferring data that supports a steady, uninterrupted stream of content, allowing for superior visual or audio quality
Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol – a set of rules to govern communications on the internet
Heading into territory, a terabyte is 1trn bytes of computer storage capacity. Used in data communications, a terat is 1trn nary digits
An internet service provider that is the sole operator of its own net, with a direct connection to the internet and other net services
The creation of a of a net, server, storage device or operating system
A portable device used to back up computer files. Coming a long way from the rth of the floppy disk, the world’s highest capacity USB flash drive was recently revealed at CES 2017
Updated, 11.25am, 15 February 2018: This icle was updated to attribute a quote about g data to Allen Bonde.
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