Data is the New…Nausea

by Dwayne Phillips

Data, data, data. Enough already. Just tell me something I don’t know.

  • Data is the new oil.
  • Data is the new bacon.
  • Data will fuel the economies of the future.
  • Data will determine the winner of the next world war.
  • Data, data, data.

I work with data. On some days, some folks call me a data scientist. I work with artificial intelligence and machine learning (I have for 40 years — yes, I am that old). I’m sick of data. Data schmata, just tell me something I don’t know.

This links to an article about using data to teach kids how to hit a baseball. DATA? They are using cameras to record how kids swing a stick and showing them ways to improve. Howard Hughes did that in the 1930s. Today, however, this is DATA.

Gosh. It is information or knowledge or wisdom or something. Tell the kid to step straight ahead and keep his head down. If the kid can resist all natural reactions to a sphere hurled at him, he will hit. DATA? Give me a break.

We have records of all sorts of things. Who called whom on the telephone. Who ate what and when. Who read what. Who wrote what. Who stood on what street corner on what day. Where did we go after going to the grocery store. What did we buy at the grocery store (hint, we probably bought groceries).

We now call all that old stuff DATA. Excuse me, I feel the need to go to the bathroom.

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Dwayne Phillips

Engineer, computing, consulting, writing, teaching, and a few other things in an effort to make us all better and smarter.