"Big Data" generally refers the massive amount of data that is being generated today. The vast amount of this data, the speed at which it is being generated and the variety of sources of the data make it difficult for traditional data analytic software tools to capture and analyze it. Many venture-backed start-ups are tackling this problem, and a recent column on the NYTimes.com website discusses this. Here's the link: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/26/technology/for-start-ups-sorting-the-data-cloud-is-the-next-big-thing.html?_r=1&pagewanted=all
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