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:
> It strikes me that the difference between Data and Information can be
> defined in a somewhat similar way the U.S. courts have defined
> pornography - as stated by Justice Potter: "I shall not today attempt
> further to define the kinds of material I understand to be
> embraced . . . [b]ut I know it when I see it . . . "
Ah yes, the definition of good art; "I know what I like"
> The difference between information and data can depend on who's
> looking at it, from what angle, and through which lens. Simply put, I
> know information when I see it, and I know data when I see it. I
> can't define a clear line between the two for 100% of the situations
> I might need to.
Which is exactly my point. :) Blurry, blurry.
> > So, in "2 + 4 + 16 = 25", the "2 + 4 + 16" is data and "25" is
> > information?
> no. 25 is the "answer" incorrect or not.
But hang on; we're talking about either data or information here. Is
"25" a piece of data, or is it information based on the equation?
> > What I'm getting at here is that data + interpretation can still yield
> > more data only. It is a blurry line.
> Is a blurry definition a definition at all? I think it can be. Human
> language is vague by its very nature, and the amazing thing about
> people is, quite frankly, that we understand each other at all
Yes, the blurry semantics of language is exactly what I'm referring
to, and again, what is the difference between data and information?
Boniface stated "IA's say X, yet do Y", but given the flakey nature of
X and Y it baffles the mind and I suspect that his argument can't be
taken for anything but bait. Hmm.
> I suspect if we were just blasting Data back and forth, we wouldn't.
> That's the beauty of information.
But it *is* only data we're blasting back and forth. It doesn't become
information until we've read it, chewed on it and made our minds up.
This is why communication is such a tricky thing; the perfection of
the method (data) is inverse to its effectivness (information). IMHO.
"Ultimately, all things are known because you want to believe you know."
- Frank Herbert
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: Tue Jun 28 2005 - 02:18:51 EDT