SIGIA-L Mail Archives: Re: [Sigia-l] data as information?
Re: [Sigia-l] data as information?
On 6/28/05, Scott Nelson <skot_at_penguinstorm.com> wrote:
> The statement was an overgeneralization; the response vague - are you
> looking for a style of IA who does, or specific names?
Just merely pointing out that statements like "all IA's do X"
certainly is false.
> > Is data
> > unconditionally not information?
> Data can be information - scientific applications, for example, often
> treat data as the final goal. A single piece, analyzed in isolation
> can be simply data, the collective becomes information.
And sometimes a bit of data is the only thing you've got, and hence
your brain will make information out of it? I feel there is some
distorted semantics between information and data here; WikiPedia tells
us about data: "a statement accepted at face value" while information
is anything from "a message received and understood" to "a collection
of facts from which conclusions may be drawn" (WordNet). This is again
a contextual problem, and the latter one surely doesn't point to the
conclusion but simply the collection of facts.
So, when Boniface writes;
> In contrast, IAs claim that information is not data but they
> themselves treat data as information.
What should we make of that? I sometimes claim information is not
data, but I sometimes claim the opposite. Sometimes I use information
where others would use data. C'mon, the blur is bigger than my ego!
> Data is certainly not inherently information, at least from a human
> perspective. Information suggests meaning, perhaps context, perhaps
> analysis. Almost certainly some combination of the three of undefined
> levels of precision. Information requires perspective, while data can
> exist in isolation.
"an item of factual information derived from measurement or research",
so data is facts while information is prose based on facts or not. But
I agree with you on this one.
> As data, you're either a 1, or a 0. Information is created by
> interpreting the meaning of this.
So, in "2 + 4 + 16 = 25", the "2 + 4 + 16" is data and "25" is
information? :) I think the blur between information and data is
larger than most people think. (Notice that 25 is the incorrect
answer, just an interpretation)
What I'm getting at here is that data + interpretation can still yield
more data only. It is a blurry line.
"Ultimately, all things are known because you want to believe you know."
- Frank Herbert
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: Tue Jun 28 2005 - 02:02:50 EDT