As a professor who asks his students to make multiple presentations to class each semester, I have noticed over the past years an increasing hyper-use of the word "basically".
Moreover, as I attend "professional" conferences, watch news television, and listen to "older" speakers, I am hearing "basically" more and more across the lexicon.
According to Webster's, "basically" is of the essence of something; elementary. In this context, the word makes sense.
Unfortunately, with all respect to the word, most modern-day uses of "basically" are valueless.
Starting a sentence, or even worse- answering a question- by beginning with "basically" is often a signal that something of little or no importance is on the way.
Conversely, I rarely ever read the word in print. Any writer worth their salt would avoid the using "basically" unless it was absolutely necessary.
A good writer and speaker realize that a proper explanation of something includes its essence and fundamental structure, hence rendering "basically" unnecessary.
This may very well seem like nitpicking. Still, count the number of times in a day you hear it used, and how. I basically believe you will be shocked and dismayed.:)