What is Big Data? If you spend much time at all online, you’re bound to come across a news outlet, business-related article, or a tweet exclaiming that Big Data is the future. After closer reading, each of these pieces will boast of data being generated by businesses and consumers alike at exponentially greater rates. The curious bit is that these sources almost seem to qualify the sheer volume of data being generated as proof of the existence and value of big data. But any data professional will tell you that simply the existence of large quantities of data doesn’t qualify as big data. It’s the ability to quantify, qualify, analyze, and most importantly, prove the validity of the data being collected that the business world is investing in. In short, big data becomes valuable when it can be effectively and efficiently used to provide insight to future trends. It can only accurately predict trends, of course, if the data can be trusted.