The quantity of information in the world is soaring. Merely keeping up with, and storing new information is difficult enough. Analyzing it, to spot patterns and extract useful information, is harder still. Even so, this data deluge has great potential for good—as long as consumers, companies, and governments make the right choices about when to restrict the flow of data, and when to encourage it. Find out more.
so much information, says James Cortada of IBM, who has written a couple of dozen books on the history of information in society. Joe Hellerstein, a computer scientist at the University of California in Berkeley, calls it the industrial revolution of data . The effect is being felt everywhere, from business to science, from government to the arts. Scientists and computer engineers have coined a new term for the phenomenon: big data . Epistemologically speaking, information is made up of a collection