I attended the Federal Big Data Working Group Meetup last Monday night.  They had 3 speakers from MIT and their Big Data / Data Base Group speaking.  Prof(s). Sam Madden and Mike Stonebraker are excellent at laying out the case, the architecture and uses for Big Data and Predictive Analytics. 

Prof. Stonebraker is now well known for his controversial views on the "Big Elephant" database vendors like Oracle and IBM.  He contends they are legacy, row based systems running on millions of lines of 30 year old code, and therefore very very slow.  He should know since he has helped build every successive wave of database systems since the beginning.  He is a big proponent of column based systems and now more recently of array based systems - like SciDB (which we recommend). 

He also believes the time has past for Hadoop and MapReduce as the central architectural components to Big Data practice. 

I did not record his talk but found a slightly older version that looks like just about the same thing here.