International Data Corp. (IDC) expects worldwide revenue for big data and business analytics (BDA) solutions to reach $260 billion in 2022, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 11.9%. It values the current market at $166 billion, up 11.7% over 2017.
The industries making the largest investments in big data and business analytics solutions are banking, manufacturing, professional services, and government. At a high level, organizations are turning to Big Data and analytics solutions to navigate the convergence of their physical and digital worlds
In this blog, we will be looking into various Big Data solutions provided by AWS(Amazon Web Services). This will give an idea about different services available on AWS for obtaining Big Data capabilities for their Businesses/Organisations.
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What is Big Data?
Big data is high-volume, high-velocity and/or high-variety information assets that demand cost-effective, innovative forms of information processing that enable enhanced insight, decision making, and process automation.
Big Data comprises of 4 important V’s which defines the characteristics of Big Data. Let us discuss these ones before moving to AWS
Volume — The name ‘Big Data’ itself is related to a size which is enormous. Size of data plays a very crucial role in determining value out of data. Also, whether a particular data is Big Data or not, is dependent upon the volume of data. Hence, ‘Volume’ is one of the important characteristic while dealing with ‘Big Data’.
Variety — The next aspect of ‘Big Data’ is its variety. Variety refers to heterogeneous sources and the nature of data, both structured and unstructured. During earlier days, spreadsheets and databases were the only sources of data. Nowadays, analysis applications use data in the form of emails, photos, videos, monitoring devices, PDFs, audio, etc. This variety of unstructured-data poses certain issues for storage, mining and analyzing data.
Velocity — The term ‘velocity’ refers to the speed of generation of data. How fast the data is generated and processed to meet the demands, determines real potential in the data. Big Data Velocity deals with the speed at which data flows in from sources like business processes, application logs, networks, and social media sites, sensors, Mobile devices, etc. Also, the flow of data is massive and continuous.
Variability — This refers to the inconsistency which can be shown by the data at times, thus hampering the process of being able to handle and manage the data effectively.
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What is AWS?
AWS comprises of many different cloud computing products and services. The highly profitable Amazon division provides servers, storage, networking, remote computing, email, mobile development and security. Furthermore. AWS can be split into two main products: EC2, Amazon’s virtual machine service and S3, a storage system by Amazon. It is so large and present in the computing world that it’s now at least 10 times the size of its nearest competitor and hosts popular websites like Netflix and Instagram
AWS is split into 12 global regions, each of which has multiple availability zones in which its servers are located. These serviced regions are split in order to allow users to set geographical limits on their services (if they so choose), but also to provide security by diversifying the physical locations in which data is held.
AWS solutions for Big Data
AWS has numerous solutions for all the development and deployment purposes. Also, in the field of Data Science and Big Data, AWS has come up with recent developments in different aspects of Big Data handling. Before jumping to tools, let us understand different aspects in Big Data for which AWS can provide solutions
- Data Ingestion
Collecting the raw data — transactions, logs, mobile devices and more — is the first challenge many organizations face when dealing with big data. A good big data platform makes this step easier, allowing developers to ingest a wide variety of data — from structured to unstructured — at any speed — from real-time to batch.
- Storage of Data
Any big data platform needs a secure, scalable, and durable repository to store data prior to or even after processing tasks. Depending on your specific requirements, you may also need temporary stores for data-in-transit
- Data Processing
This is the step where data transformation happens from its raw state into a consumable format — usually by means of sorting, aggregating, joining and even performing more advanced functions and algorithms. The resulting data sets undergo storage for further processing or made available for consumption via business intelligence and data visualization tools.
Big data is all about getting high value, actionable insights from your data assets. Ideally, data is available to stakeholders through self-service business intelligence and agile data visualization tools that allow for fast and easy exploration of datasets. Depending on the type of analytics, end-users may also consume the resulting data in the form of statistical “predictions” — in the case of predictive analytics — or recommended actions — in the case of prescriptive analytics.
AWS tools for Big Data
In the previous sections, we looked at the fields in Big Data where AWS can provide solutions. Additionally, AWS has multiple tools and services in its arsenal to enable customers with the capabilities of Big Data
Let us look at the various solutions provided by AWS for handling different stages involved in handling Big Data
Amazon Kinesis Firehose is a fully managed service for delivering real-time streaming data directly to Amazon S3. Kinesis Firehose automatically scales to match the volume and throughput of streaming data and requires no ongoing administration. Kinesis Firehose is configurable to transform streaming data before it’s stored in Amazon S3. Its transformation capabilities include compression, encryption, data batching, and Lambda functions. Kinesis Firehose can compress data before it’s storage in Amazon S3. It currently supports GZIP, ZIP, and SNAPPY compression formats. GZIP is a better choice because it can be used by Amazon Athena, Amazon EMR, and Amazon Redshift. Kinesis Firehose encryption supports Amazon S3 server-side encryption with AWS Key Management Service (AWS KMS) for encrypting delivered data in Amazon S3
You can use AWS Snowball to securely and efficiently migrate bulk data from on-premises storage platforms and Hadoop clusters to S3 buckets. After you create a job in the AWS Management Console, a Snowball appliance will be automatically shipped to you. After a Snowball arrives, connect it to your local network, install the Snowball client on your on-premises data source, and then use the Snowball client to select and transfer the file directories to the Snowball device. The Snowball client uses AES-256-bit encryption. No encryption keys with the Snowball device the makes data transfer process is highly secure. After the data transfer is complete, the Snowball’s E Ink shipping label will automatically update. Ship the device back to AWS. Upon receipt at AWS, data transfer takes place from the Snowball device to your S3 bucket and stored as S3 objects in their original/native format. Snowball also has an HDFS client, so data migration may happen directly from Hadoop clusters into an S3 bucket in its native format.
- Amazon S3
Amazon S3 is secure, highly scalable, durable object storage with millisecond latency for data access. S3 can store any type of data from anywhere — websites and mobile apps, corporate applications, and data from IoT sensors or devices. It can also store and retrieve any amount of data, with unmatched availability, and built from the ground up to deliver 99.999999999% (11 nines) of durability. S3 Select focuses on data read and retrieval, reducing response times up to 400%. S3 provides comprehensive security and compliance capabilities that meet even the most stringent regulatory requirements.
- AWS Glue
AWS Glue is a fully manageable service that provides a data catalogue to make data in the data lake discoverable. Additionally, it has the ability to do extract, transform, and load (ETL) to prepare data for analysis. Also, the inbuilt data catalogue is like a persistent metadata store for all data assets, making all of the data searchable, and queryable in a single view.
For big data processing using the Spark and Hadoop, Amazon EMR provides a managed service that makes it easy, fast, and cost-effective to process vast amounts data. Furthermore, EMR supports 19 different open-source projects including Hadoop, Spark, and HBase. Also it comes with managed EMR Notebooks for data engineering, data science development, and collaboration. Each project updates in EMR within 30 days of a version release. It ensures you have the latest and greatest from the community, effortlessly.
For data warehousing, Amazon Redshift provides the ability to run complex, analytic queries against petabytes of structured data. Also, it includes Redshift Spectrum that runs SQL queries directly against Exabytes of structured or unstructured data in S3 without the need for unnecessary data movement. Amazon Redshift is less than a tenth of the cost of traditional solutions. Start small for just $0.25 per hour, and scale out to petabytes of data for $1,000 per terabyte per year.
- Amazon QuickSight
For dashboards and visualizations, Amazon Quicksight provides you fast, cloud-powered business analytics service. It makes it easy to build stunning visualizations and rich dashboards. Additionally, they can be accessed from any browser or mobile device.
Amazon Web Services provides a fully integrated portfolio of cloud computing services. Furthermore, tt helps you build, secure, and deploy your big data applications. Also, with AWS, there’s no hardware to procure and infrastructure to maintain and scale. Due to this, you can focus your resources on uncovering new insights. With new features added constantly, you’ll always be able to leverage the latest technologies without making long-term investment commitments.
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