Dumbing down or smartening up — which is the bigger opportunity for big data?

What’s the big, imminent opportunity for big data? Easier analytics or the development of data science – it depends on whom you ask.

This was a major question at GigaOM’s Structure:Europe conference on Wednesday, posed to two notable VCs, Michael Abbott of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Jonathan Heiliger of North Bridge Venture Partners.

“There are 2.8 zettabytes of data in the world,” said Abbott. “Less than 1 percent has been analysed… there is a step forward as to the discovery element.”

For Heiliger, though, the opportunity is more fundamental: “Data science is part science, part art. There is an opportunity to build better tools to dumb down analytics…. but technology has enabled us to ask questions. The bigger opportunity here is being able to educate people on data science and turn this into a real practice.”

Check out the rest of our Structure:Europe 2013 coverage here, and a video embed of the session follows below:

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A transcription of the video follows on the next page