By Dr. Richard Soley, Executive Director, Industrial Internet Consortium
With the rise of interconnected machines and devices, many companies are beginning to reap the benefits of deploying Industrial Internet technologies throughout their organizations: from the way data is stored to the way factories operate. The Industrial Internet integrates data from connected machines and devices with analytics to create a comprehensive picture of what is happening now and likely to happen in the future.According to a joint study by International Data Corporation and EMC, the Industrial Internet is driving exponential growth in the “Digital Universe”: from 4.4 zettabytes today to 44 zettabytes by 2020. In addition, IT professionals will go from storing, on average, 230 GB of data each to 1,231 GB each. While the benefits of the Industrial Internet are well documented – predictive maintenance, lower operating costs, increased utilization rates, etc. -- the vast amount of new data that is created place clear stresses on data management infrastructure. As more and more data becomes available, legacy systems will need to be able to accommodate vast influxes of data at a single time, as well as ensure that the processing of data is continuous and smooth. To solve these issues, new thinking and new data management solutions will be needed. One such new approach is the concept of the “industrial data lake”, coined by GE and Pivotal Inc., which allows data independent of format and structure to be managed and analyzed using a common architecture.