Browse Definitions:

real-time monitoring

Contributor(s): Matthew Haughn

Real-time (data) monitoring is the streaming of continuously updated zero-to-low latency information.

Real-time monitoring is used in many fields to enable quick reaction to momentary events. Real-time monitoring provides constant information to make up to date informed decisions and see trends as they develop.

Used in many industries, especially in those involving IT and manufacturing, real-time monitoring can be used in situations such as:

  • Server and Datacenter management.
  • Contact centers for queue and staff management, ensuring queue uptime, reporting statistics about service.
  • In sales where agents are sent an alert when customers are interested in high value or high margin items.
  • Web store implementations including real-time data can take streamed data to see missed sales opportunities due to low inventory, and use using AI to detect coupon fraud where a customer uses a code multiple times against its terms.
  • Real time data can be used to predict equipment maintenance requirements and imminent failures.
  • Assisting management of squads of vehicles in fleet management to help catch reckless, sleepy and impaired drivers as well as maximize fleet utilization.
  • RFID tracking in retail can enable real-time updates on inventory and theft detection.

The data gathered for real-time monitoring are often of a single purpose such as server management. At the same time the data gathered may come from a number of disparate sources; such as multiple software logs on the server as well as data gathered from a router, firewall or other networking equipment.  Often times the data comes from ethernet connections but USB data acquisition controllers are becoming more flexible and reliable by way of advances in onboard intelligence that improve abilities and mitigate difficulties in working with USB.

Generally, real-time monitoring software displays relevant data on customizable dashboards. Data might be given expected ranges and formats to be displayed in such as numerically line graphs, bar graphs, pie charts or percentages. The displays of the data can be arranged according to priorities and administrator preferences.

This was last updated in December 2017

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