Archive for the 'data' Category

Beyond Average Joe

Apr 25 2011 Published by neilgains under data

“All models are wrong, some models are useful.”  - George Box

The flaw of averages

Market research reports are generally packed full of average scores and comparisons of means, and not often enough with distributions and extremes.  In the real (business) world this is a mistake as, in the words of Sam Savage’s (f)law of averages, ‘plans based on average assumptions are wrong on average’.  To put this another way, errors occur in the real world when we replace uncertain numbers by single (or simple) averages. Read more »

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Information Rich or Attention Poor?

Mar 29 2011 Published by neilgains under data

“What information consumes is rather obvious: it consumes the attention of its recipients.  Hence, a wealth of information creates a poverty of attention.”  - Herbert Simon

Do you need more information?

How much can information can the world use?  It can certainly create a great deal of information according to a study by Martin Hilbert at the University of Southern California, but the ability to create and even store more and more information is not the same as the ability to understand, synthesise and communicate the information.  I believe this is one of the most important issues we face today, both as content producers and as content consumers with increasing competition for our limited attention.   Read more »

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Are Researchers Data Journalists?

Sep 29 2010 Published by neilgains under data

“The ability to take data - to be able to understand it, to process it, to extract value from it, to visualize it, to communicate it - that’s going to be a hugely important skill in the next decades…Because now we really do have essentially free and ubiquitous data. So the complimentary scarce factor is the ability to understand that data and extract value from it.” - Hal Varian, Google
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All Research is Problem Solving

Sep 06 2010 Published by neilgains under data

“In our reasonings concerning matter of fact, there are all imaginable degrees of assurance, from the highest certainty to the lowest species of moral evidence.  A wise man, therefore, proportions his belief to the evidence.”  - David Hume

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Visualisation is the Solution to the Data Problem

Aug 27 2010 Published by admin under data

“Data is not information, information is not knowledge, knowledge is not understanding, understanding is not wisdom.”  - Cliff Stoll & Gary Schubert

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