Welcome To The Human Data Center

In Big Data by Daniel Newman3 Comments


It’s hard to believe but regardless of whether you are a boomer or a millennial, the average consumer spends almost 24 hours per week online. An entire day!

Other than sleeping (for most of us), there may be nothing we do for more time in a given week than search, email, and browse the Internet. However, in a world where data is fast becoming the next precious resource, 1 out of 7 just isn’t enough. So in an effort to better connect the consumer to the interwebs, the brands we love (and don’t) are seeking out ways to keep us more connected, more often.

Apple Makes A Splash

Just this week marked another historic event for Apple as they announced the launch of the 6th edition of their iPhone as well as the unveiling of their long overdue iWatch.  With these new products comes the launch of iOS 8, which is going to offer some game changing features such as predictive text that knows what you are going to say before you say it and a mobile health app that tracks your sleep patterns, caloric intake and fitness levels. Essentially making the iPhone an extension (or replacement) of your brain.

Apple is also launching some other interesting technologies that allow you to automate the control of your home HVAC, Security and home theater, essentially replacing your thermostat, remote control and alarm system.

And while many people (including me) are ecstatic about where the technology is going, we are all a little bit blinded by the implications of being connected 24x7x365. In short, we are becoming intertwined with our devices; our applications and therefore we are now more data center than we are human.

And The Emergence Of The Human-1

Big Data Around The Clock

Did you know that 90% of the worlds data was created in just the past 2 years?

While many folks think of data as the endless lines of information in spreadsheets and other structured databases, the truth about data is that the largest part of it is being created by our around the clock behaviors.

In just one minute online we are creating massive amounts of data:

  •      685,000 Facebook Posts
  •      100,000 Twitter Updates
  •      1000 Blog Posts
  •      24 Hours of New YouTube video

And these data points are just the tip of the iceberg. With all of these activities growing at 60%+ percent year over year, the amount of data at our disposal will only grow.

However, for a better web experience, more targeted marketing, and improved business intelligence, the more data available, the better. All of these insights are just making us smarter. So the key now is to figure out how to gather more information and data about human behavior by capturing the other 6/7th of their existence and this goal is being rapidly realized by the proliferation of wearable technologies that connect people to the Internet even when they are living their life offline (at least in theory).

The Emerging Human Data Center

It may surprise you to know that in the future wearable technology may be so non-intrusive that it becomes almost invisible.

Unlike the more known wearables like your Fitbit or your Jawbone Up, the next generation of wearable technology could be embedded right into your clothing or even inside of your skin, but it will have the potential to collect and share data about our activity, health and more without any human contribution except of course just living our lives.

Regardless of whether the data is extracted via a microchip or just your Google Glass, the bottom line is that society is undergoing a massive change as our lives offline and our lives online are blurring into a single omnipresent experience where the only consistency is our connectedness to World Wide Web.

In short, we are becoming a living, breathing data center where our wants, needs and desires are now being recorded, monitored and used to impact our online experience and help marketers know more about who we are, and perhaps more importantly why we exist.

Of course at this point in time it is all a choice, how we use the Internet or if we choose to use it at all. But right now, at this very juncture, we have one by one opted in as contributors to the world’s largest data center where as a collective, we are the product, the service and the consumer.

This blog was written as part of the Connect With Ricoh Innovative Ideas program and was first seen here. While I was compensated for this post, the ideas and views are my own. 

Daniel Newman is the Principal Analyst of Futurum Research and the CEO of Broadsuite Media Group. Living his life at the intersection of people and technology, Daniel works with the world’s largest technology brands exploring Digital Transformation and how it is influencing the enterprise. From Big Data to IoT to Cloud Computing, Newman makes the connections between business, people and tech that are required for companies to benefit most from their technology projects, which leads to his ideas regularly being cited in CIO.Com, CIO Review and hundreds of other sites across the world. A 5x Best Selling Author including his most recent “Building Dragons: Digital Transformation in the Experience Economy,” Daniel is also a Forbes, Entrepreneur and Huffington Post Contributor. MBA and Graduate Adjunct Professor, Daniel Newman is a Chicago Native and his speaking takes him around the world each year as he shares his vision of the role technology will play in our future.


  1. Daniel,
    I’m with you on the details and trends, but your summary phrase, “Human Data Center,” may be more, well, personally empowering than mine. An alternate summary is each individual becomes a peripheral for someone else’s massive data center. But it’s Monday, so maybe my usual optimism is not flowing fully.

    One way or another, we’ll increasingly see the steady in-and-out flow of personal data as a new form of breathing. Just as consistent and nearly as important. When someone encourages you to take a deep breath, they may soon mean something new.

    Cheers, Ken

  2. Today social media and other micro blogging sites are good platform  for storing your personal data like resume and other text information. http://www.deltacomputergroup.com/it-services/data-center-maintenance

  3. Pingback: WearableTech + IoT = Human Data Center Community Chat on #CloudTalk | Millennial CEO

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