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My Hierarchy of Data Evolution

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We first must understand data to use it properly

Mick's Data Axiom

It is too easy to overrate the value of data or information we get, be it from the print media or the new electronic media. We may even misunderstand or misuse it entirely. A statistic may or may not be fact, and not all facts lead one to truth. And some collections of text or numbers are of no value whatsoever.

One day — or perhaps it was at night — or maybe while ruminating (yes, "ruminating") on the porcelain convenience — or was it while laying in bed through an episode of insomnia? — I developed the following sequence, or hierarchy, which I casually call "Mick's Data Axiom" or, better yet, "Mickelson's Data Hierarchy":

      

  • A string of alpha/numeric characters needs to be parsed to become data;
  • Data needs to be interpreted to become information;
  • Information needs to be applied to become knowledge;
  • Knowledge needs to be integrated into experience to be meaningful;
  • And experience needs to be tested against the context of truth to become wisdom.

      

 

There it is, for what it's worth. In any event, it's been reflected upon, parsed, interpreted and understood. But by whom else, might you ask? Well, if you've just read it, perhaps it no longer lurks alone. No isolated analysis then.

Actually, I tried it out before a small group at a Bible study; it received a consensus response somewhat akin to those glazed-over, "huh?" responses that are not uncommon nowadays.

Awesome AxiomMickelson's Content Hierarchy ©2001, J. Thom Mickelson