This is part three of a five-part mini-series looking at Application Data Value Characteristics everything is not the same across IT data centers, data infrastructures and cloud environments. In this post, we continue looking at application and data characteristics with a focus on different types of data. There is more to data than simply being big data, fast data, big fast or unstructured, structured or semistructured, some of which has been touched on in this series, with more to follow. Note that there is also data in terms of the programs, applications, code, rules, policies as well as configuration settings, metadata along with other items stored.
Various Types of Data
Data types along with characteristics include big data, little data, fast data, and old as well as new data with a different value, life-cycle, volume and velocity. There are data in files and objects that are big representing images, figures, text, binary, structured or unstructured that are software defined by the applications that create, modify and use them.
There are many different types of data and applications to meet various business, organization, or functional needs. Keep in mind that applications are based on programs which consist of algorithms and data structures that define the data, how to use it, as well as how and when to store it. Those data structures define data that will get transformed into information by programs while also being stored in memory and on data stored in various formats.
Just as various applications have different algorithms, they also have different types of data. Even though everything is not the same in all environments, or even how the same applications get used across various organizations, there are some similarities. Even though there are different types of applications and data, there are also some similarities and general characteristics. Keep in mind that information is the result of programs (applications and their algorithms) that process data into something useful or of value.
Data typically has a basic life cycle of:
Creation and some activity, including being protected
Dormant, followed by either continued activity or going inactive
Disposition (delete or remove)
In general, data can be
Temporary, ephemeral or transient
Dynamic or changing (“hot data”)
Active static on-line, near-line, or off-line (“warm-data”)
In-active static on-line or off-line (“cold data”)
Data is organized
General data characteristics include:
Value = From no value to unknown to some or high value
Volume = Amount of data, files, objects of a given size
Variety = Various types of data (small, big, fast, structured, unstructured)
Velocity = Data streams, flows, rates, load, process, access, active or static