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How Can Thick Data Improve the Way We Use Big Data?

Troy Sadkowsky - Friday, June 30, 2017

 

April 16, 2017

TedTalk: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WaOUJa9fjXU

Medium: https://medium.com/ethnography-matters/why-big-data-needs-thick-data-b4b3e75e3d7

Big data can help us solve problems, optimize services, predict the future and learn more about ourselves and human behavior. But when big data cannot answer a question, or makes an incorrect prediction, what if it is because data is not telling us the whole story?

In a Ted Talk and an article on Medium, Tricia Wang, a technology ethnographer, implores us to realize that, even in the age of data-driven decision making, big data can have some serious blind spots, and often suffers from a loss of context through valuable variables and trends that defy quantification.

Insights on contained systems, such as electricity grids or delivery logistics, have established big data’s reputation for success. Although this reputation has attracted investment from a huge array of companies, Wang claims, 73% of big data projects are not profitable, because big data projects frequently do not produce the insights that they seem to promise. For dynamic systems, especially those that depend on human emotions, behavior, and how people are impacted and interact with their environment, certain variables are difficult to measure and model.

She describes how opportunities can be gained and losses diminished by using big data in conjugation with “thick data”, observations that use qualitative methods to understand human emotions, behaviors and interactions with context. For example, the realization by ethnographer Graham McCracken that Netflix users actually enjoy binge-watching, led Netflix to redesign their user experience, improve their business and transform the way we consume media. Through qualitative research and collecting stories about how users interact with their product, Netflix was able to go to their data science team, validate these findings, and act on this competitive insight.

Wang summarizes that while “Thick Data loses scale…Big Data loses resolution.” While big data analytics can have a huge sample size, recognize large-scale patterns, and benefit from the strengths of machine learning, thick data uses small samples sizes, but understands subjects at a much greater depth, and benefits from aspects of human intelligence and pattern recognition that still elude computer programs. As data scientists, the more we understand the limitations of our methods and pay attention to thick data, the more we can recognize the factors and variables our data is missing. With a more holistic perspective, data analysis is better poised to uncover more truthful and powerful insights.

 

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How Can Thick Data Improve the Way We Use Big Data?

Troy Sadkowsky - Friday, June 30, 2017

 

April 16, 2017

TedTalk: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WaOUJa9fjXU

Medium: https://medium.com/ethnography-matters/why-big-data-needs-thick-data-b4b3e75e3d7

Big data can help us solve problems, optimize services, predict the future and learn more about ourselves and human behavior. But when big data cannot answer a question, or makes an incorrect prediction, what if it is because data is not telling us the whole story?

In a Ted Talk and an article on Medium, Tricia Wang, a technology ethnographer, implores us to realize that, even in the age of data-driven decision making, big data can have some serious blind spots, and often suffers from a loss of context through valuable variables and trends that defy quantification.

Insights on contained systems, such as electricity grids or delivery logistics, have established big data’s reputation for success. Although this reputation has attracted investment from a huge array of companies, Wang claims, 73% of big data projects are not profitable, because big data projects frequently do not produce the insights that they seem to promise. For dynamic systems, especially those that depend on human emotions, behavior, and how people are impacted and interact with their environment, certain variables are difficult to measure and model.

She describes how opportunities can be gained and losses diminished by using big data in conjugation with “thick data”, observations that use qualitative methods to understand human emotions, behaviors and interactions with context. For example, the realization by ethnographer Graham McCracken that Netflix users actually enjoy binge-watching, led Netflix to redesign their user experience, improve their business and transform the way we consume media. Through qualitative research and collecting stories about how users interact with their product, Netflix was able to go to their data science team, validate these findings, and act on this competitive insight.

Wang summarizes that while “Thick Data loses scale…Big Data loses resolution.” While big data analytics can have a huge sample size, recognize large-scale patterns, and benefit from the strengths of machine learning, thick data uses small samples sizes, but understands subjects at a much greater depth, and benefits from aspects of human intelligence and pattern recognition that still elude computer programs. As data scientists, the more we understand the limitations of our methods and pay attention to thick data, the more we can recognize the factors and variables our data is missing. With a more holistic perspective, data analysis is better poised to uncover more truthful and powerful insights.

 

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Hey! I'm at work surfing around your blog from my new iphone! Just wanted to say I love reading through your blog and look forward to all your posts! Keep up the superb work!
Silvia commented on 19-Sep-2018 03:25 PM
iphone x casesiPhone Cases wrgfwx 144
Bernadine commented on 19-Sep-2018 03:26 PM
iphone 7 caseiphone 6 plus case sfvsef 92246
Ila commented on 19-Sep-2018 03:34 PM
5. Choose reliable dommain registration business.
Ecu Hardware Fixes Crossword commented on 19-Sep-2018 03:37 PM
Hello there! I know tjis is kind of off toppic but I
was wondering which blog platform are you using for this website?
I'm getting tired of Wordpress because I've had
problems with hackers and I'm looking at options for another platform.
I woud be fantastic iif you could point me in the direction of a good platform.
Shanon commented on 19-Sep-2018 03:38 PM
iPhone Cases saleiPhone Cases yvmxxh 10177
Ecu Decoding Software commented on 19-Sep-2018 03:46 PM
Valuable info. Lucky me I found your website by accident,
and I am surprised why this twist oof fate didn'thappened in advance!
I bookmarked it.
Roscoe commented on 19-Sep-2018 03:48 PM
iphone 8 caseiPhone Cases sale hjpaan 2319
Grady commented on 19-Sep-2018 03:51 PM
cheap iphone Casesiphone 7 case nfhvxb 67963
kobe A.D. commented on 19-Sep-2018 03:58 PM
As of 2010, the value of the basketball normal for indoor use, the official NBA sport ball, is $89.ninety
nine. The value of a common ball for outside use, the NBA Street Basketball, is
$17.sixty two.
Kobe Bryant Shoes commented on 19-Sep-2018 04:02 PM
Whether in an aggressive game, or hanging
out after hours, wearers of this shoe will appreciate its
flexibility - from assertive play on the court docket to everyday use.
Miles commented on 19-Sep-2018 04:09 PM
We stumbled over here different website and thought I should check
things out. I like what I see so now i am following you.

Loook forward to looking over your web page
repeatedly.
kyrie Irving Shoes commented on 19-Sep-2018 04:17 PM
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person play this recreation with a particular sneakers.
kyrie irving shoes commented on 19-Sep-2018 04:22 PM
Their footwear also provide full help since they arrive with solid
rubber and herring bone that provides optimum assist and luxury
to the wearer.
Margie commented on 19-Sep-2018 04:28 PM
Terrific article! This is the type off info that are supposed to be shared across the net.
Shame on Google for no longer positioning this submit upper!
Come on over and consult with mmy site . Thank you =)
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any want to do that when the identical is offered at
inexpensive costs.
Ferdinand commented on 19-Sep-2018 04:37 PM
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I've a mission that I'm just now operating on, and I have been at the look
out for such info.
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It's similar with domains on the Internet.
http://phoeberutherford2.wikidot.com commented on 19-Sep-2018 04:55 PM
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will help, so here it happens.
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kobe Bryant shoes commented on 19-Sep-2018 05:20 PM
Like, simply looking for a pair of sneakers to wear along
with your denims to feel casual on the weekends; going to be purchase running shoes for sport or athletic function or
just want sneaker for dancing purpose.

Post a Comment




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