The way we interact with the world around us has changed dramatically over the last 20 years. In 1999 when I went to see the movie The Matrix, the first one, first of all I learned about it from a theater billboard. I went there. I lined up. I bought the tickets cash and for two and a half hours I watched the movie, I was disconnected from the rest of the world. What with this experience look like today? Well, I would have bought my tickets online. I would have taken a few pictures on the way or even in the theater, and I would have shared them on Facebook or Instagram. That is if at all I decided to go to the theater instead of streaming the whole thing from home. With all this, we add to the amount of digital data in our world. But not only we as individuals generate data, a massive amount is also created across the value chain of any industry. During the manufacturing process for example, factories are equipped with sensors that continuously assess or track the performance of every machine and track the parts which go through the assembly process. Due to this, the world's stock of information or data has been growing. Let's see how this growth looks like. In the 80s and 90s the world's installed capacity of storage was growing steadily at around 20 percent per annum. Interestingly at that time, more than 95 percent of stored information was analog and only 5 percent digital. Analog is basically your audio cassettes, your photo negatives, the theater movies at that time. But then something dramatic happened. Digital started to become the default storage format for information. In the year 2000 it already accounted for 25 percent of the total stored information. At around 55 exabytes. That's 55 trillion megabytes. And if you remember our three fundamental laws, you will be able to tell how this will unfold. Very quickly by the year 2003, we lived that magical moment where you had as much digital information as analog. In 2007 digital information exploded to reach 94 percent of the total world storage capacity. What's interesting here is the fact that this information is more and more likely to be stored on a laptop, a mobile phone, or server with an IP address globally connected in a network. This means that the ability to link different pieces of information, correlate them, build inferences becomes almost effortless and this has a multiplier effect on the value you can extract from it. But let's first see how the amount of data has evolved since then. In 2007, as we said, we had 300 exabytes of data. Today, we have already exceeded 4,000 exabytes and IDC expect this number to hit 40 zettabytes by the year 2020. That is 40,000 exabytes. You can pause this video for a minute and see how many hard drives like the one you have at home it will take you to store all this data. I don't know what hard drives you have but I bet it will be very big. So what is big data really? Big data is defined by what we call the three Vs. Big data is big. So first of all it's defined by its volume. Every minute 156 million emails and 452,000 tweets are sent worldwide. Remember we're talking zettabytes of data. There are also multiple types of data. So secondly, big data is defined by its variety. Data is not only collected during structured interactions, when you fill in an online form or you use your credit card. More and more data is stored in unstructured difficult-to-mine formats, images, speeches in various languages or videos like this one. Last but not least big data is fast. So it is defined by its velocity. Do you remember the days when we wrote letters, how long it took to ship them overseas. Today, we communicate with our friends all across the world in near real time by chat or even video call. So big data means that there are zettabytes of data that come in unstructured format and that can be exchanged in real time, which then again contributes to the growth of the data and therefore to its volume. You are now able to recognize big data when you see it at least technically because when I put on my business hat, I see there is a fourth V missing. Just because a company has a bunch of servers where it dumps every single piece of data, doesn't make it a big data business. A company needs to be able to translate that data into competitive advantage to create value and business impact from it.