‘Big Data’ may be defined as extremely large data sets that may be analysed computationally to reveal patterns, trends, and associations, especially relating to human behaviour and interactions.
Data sets have grown in size in part because data is being generated more easily, more often by more people. Examples include the photos you share on Facebook, your tweets, the explosion of sensors around us, such as mobile devices, security cameras, wireless networks. Other people that have very large data sets are those in the finance sector, environmental monitoring, and retail.
Data analytics is the process of examining large data sets containing a variety of data types, to uncover hidden patterns, identify unknown correlations, market trends (such as the stock market movements), customer preferences (ever notice when on Amazon you view one product it links you to other similar products?) and other useful business information. Data Scientists use these findings to lead more effective marketing, new revenue opportunities, better customer service, improved operational efficiency, competitive advantages over rival companies, and so on.