#24 Should I provide streaming data products?

Short answer is yes. If you want to know why, read further. I'll give you two reasons why you MUST start planning to offer streaming data products: modern architectures and fast data.

Support Event-Driven Architectures

Event-Driven Architectures - EDA delivers some critical aspects of digital business: real-time intelligence and responsiveness, extensibility of applications, global scale, and “lossless” business activity analysis. EDA is a design paradigm in which a software component executes in response to receiving one or more event notifications.

EDA is more loosely coupled than the client/server paradigm because the component that sends the notification doesn’t know the identity of the receiving components at the time of compiling. EDA is now seen as one of the foundational elements in Gartner’s IoT Reference Architecture and one of the 5 top emerging technologies impacting customer experience.

The event-driven architecture is based on data feeds and reacting to changes. Streaming data products are ideal for the model.

Fast data to match business needs

Analyst firm Forrester describes “fast data” as “any type of data that originates in applications and devices and is streamed, stored, and immediately analyzed by applications that detect patterns, automate decisions, and immediately initiate actions executed through a business or operations process and/or customer-facing applications.”

Fast data workloads—such as personalization, real-time recommendations, and always-up-to-date logistics and inventory—have become basic building blocks for any modern business. From a customer (or employee or partner) perspective, fast data is about getting the benefit of useful intelligence in real time, at the moment it matters most.

Depending on the context, that may allow the lag between “action and insight” to be anywhere from as fast as milliseconds to as long as a minute. But the bottom line is that an end user would describe a great fast data experience as “real time” or “immediate.” It is no surprise that streaming data products are manifestations of fast data.