Big data technology means that corporations know so much about every person that during every hiring decision, every sale to a consumer, and every loan to a family, they can increasingly extract the maximum profit from each of those transactions. This big data dynamic seems like a key story in the current rise in economic inequality.
To really make sense of diverse personal and group data for biomedical use, we need to generate enough to feed sophisticated algorithms that can find patterns and notice differences. Health data needs big data. This will have real impact in understanding disease, developing more effective drugs, and identifying people at risk of developing disease so we can intervene before they get sick.