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Polystores: The Data Management Game Changer

A polystore is a game-changing approach to data management that enables seamless integration of diverse data sources and technologies.
Sep 28th, 2023 10:00am by
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The amount of digital information being generated is growing exponentially. In 2021, there were 79 zettabytes of data created, copied, and consumed globally. By 2026, that figure is expected to double and by 2030, my opinion is that we will breach the yottabyte era.

To put it into perspective:

  • One petabyte is approximately 11,000 4K movies
  • One zettabyte (ZB) is 1 million petabytes, or approximately 11 billion 4K movies

To put it another way, all of the books in the Library of Congress, if digitized, would be around 40 terabytes or 4 percent of a petabyte (calculating one book as one MB x 40 million books, rounded down). The world has produced approximately 500,000 movies, approximately 46 petabytes worth, which is less than 1% of a zettabyte.

Of course, not all organizations will be faced with big data challenges. However, data is the foundation of most, if not all, businesses. Like it or not, our data footprint will continue to expand and data will evolve not only in size, but in form as well. Structured or unstructured, data tells a story and each story is unique to the success of our businesses. Whether an organization is accumulating large amounts of data or have smaller siloed sets of data, the amount and types of data that organizations need to ingest will evolve and change over time. It’s just the natural progression of evolving business needs.

And just like nature, to stay ahead of the curve we must learn to adapt. The current paradigm of traditional approaches to data management are facing unprecedented challenges. This is where polystores come in.

According to big data experts and researchers, a polystore system is a “database management system (DBMS) that is built on top of multiple, heterogeneous, integrated storage engines. Each of these terms is important to distinguish a polystore from conventional federated DBMS.”

A polystore is a game-changing approach to data management that enables seamless integration of diverse data sources and technologies. By combining different database technologies tailored for specific use cases, organizations can optimize performance, scalability, and analytical capabilities through a polystore.

As businesses, individuals, and connected devices generate an ever-increasing amount of information, the need to effectively manage and extract value from this data becomes paramount.

The Rise of Unstructured Data

When we go see a doctor, what languages do we speak? We don’t speak in terms of data; however what we do say and share — regardless of language — does get translated into a “usable” form by medical professionals and the tools that they use. Just within the medical industry, medical knowledge is said to double every 73 days. This means that the sheer amount of data needed to be consumed by doctors to be up to date is not only growing exponentially but challenging to keep up with. On the other hand, it isn’t only new knowledge medical professionals are struggling with; it’s having to “throw out” outdated medical information.

Unstructured data and the consumption of it has evolved, but the technology behind its storage and the use of it is still in its infancy. Analyst firm IDC predicts that by 2025, approximately 80% of global data will be unstructured. This includes diverse data types like text, images, audio, video, social media posts, and more. Traditional data management approaches often fall short in handling the complexity and variety of data sources, leading to silos, inefficiencies, and missed opportunities for valuable insights.

To say that organizations are grappling with the challenges of managing vast amounts of diverse data is probably a huge understatement.

Unlocking the Power of Polystores

Over the years, we’ve witnessed the growth of data units, moving from megabytes to gigabytes, terabytes, and petabytes. With the rise of zettabytes, we enter an era where data volumes are measured in millions of petabytes. This exponential growth needs innovative solutions to handle and derive insights from such vast amounts of information.

Polystores can help address the challenges of this data explosion and unstructured data. They excel at seamlessly integrating diverse data sources, so organizations can consolidate and harmonize data from various systems, databases, and applications. Whether it’s structured data from relational databases, unstructured data from social media feeds, or semi-structured data from IoT devices, polystores provide a unified view of the entire data landscape. With polystores, you can break down data silos, facilitate cross-functional analysis, and derive comprehensive insights. You can pull data from a single source without having to find which database the data was stored in.

As new storage technologies continually emerge, there’s bound to be frequent shifts in the data technology ecosystem. Polystores offer the flexibility to adapt and evolve along with these changes. As organizations transition from one database technology to another, polystores provide a seamless transition path, ensuring minimal disruption and maximum utilization of existing data assets. This adaptability future-proofs data management strategies, enabling businesses to leverage emerging technologies without starting from scratch.

There are over 300 different types of databases from various vendors. Each has its own unique use and functionality, whether it’s performance, scale, or other unique features. Polystores embrace a hybrid approach, leveraging the strengths of different database technologies tailored to specific use cases. By combining the power of various databases, such as relational, NoSQL, columnar, and graph databases, organizations can optimize performance, scalability, and analytical capabilities. This allows for efficient data processing, faster query performance, and the ability to handle diverse data types. Polystores empower businesses to unlock the true potential of their data by utilizing the most suitable technologies for different data requirements.

In the ever-expanding world of data, organizations face the daunting task of managing multiple datasets efficiently. Every time a business needs change, we add to the layer of data complexity. Polystores offer a game-changing solution, allowing seamless integration of diverse data sources while adapting to evolving data technologies. Businesses that embrace polystores can overcome data silos, reduce the risk of migrating databases, and unlock valuable insights to make informed decisions. It’s worth keeping an eye out (if not making the leap to embrace them ahead of your competition) — polystores are the key to future-proof data management strategies, enabling you and your organization to thrive in this era of big data.

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