Will Scully-Power

Datarati – Behind the name
October 9, 2010, 3:23 am
Filed under: Datarati | Tags: ,

The term data refers to groups of information that represent the qualitative or quantitative attributes of avariable or set of variables. Data (plural of “datum”) are typically the results of measurements and can be the basis of graphs, images, or observations of a set of variables.

Data are often viewed as the lowest level of abstraction from which information and knowledge are derived. Raw data refers to a collection ofnumbers, characters, images or other outputs from devices that collect information to convert physical quantities into symbols, that are unprocessed.

The word data is the Latin plural of datumneuter past participle of dare, “to give”, hence “something given”. In discussions of problems in geometrymathematicsengineering, and so on, the terms givens anddata are used interchangeably.

Also, data is a representation of a fact, figure, and idea. Such usage is the origin of data as a concept in computer science: data are numbers, words, images, etc., accepted as they stand.

In Hinduism, Rati (also called Rūpiņī) is the goddess of passion and lust, and a daughter of Daksha. She married Kāma, the god of love.

Hal Varian, the chief economist at Google believes that a new era is dawning for what you might call the Datarati—and it’s all about harnessing supply and demand.

“What’s ubiquitous and cheap?” Varian asks. “Data.” And what is scarce? The analytic ability to utilize that data.

As a result, he believes that the kind of technical person who once would have wound up working for a hedge fund on Wall Street will now work at a firm whose business hinges on making smart, daring choices—decisions based on surprising results gleaned from algorithmic spelunking and executed with the confidence that comes from really doing the math.

More: http://www.wired.com/culture/culturereviews/magazine/17-06/nep_googlenomics


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