Clip File: Talking Data

Big Data. Big Buzz Word. Lotsa confusion.

So it’s probably worth surveying the landscape to see what folks mean when they talk about data, analytics and their use in getting to the heart of things.

First up, political folks’ favorite Nate Silver who gave a good interview to Charlie Rose. It’s billed as a conversation about his move to ESPN (and, one gathers, abandonment of politics) but what Silver says near the conclusion – that data needs to be parsed and parsed with intelligence – is worth heeding.

Following up on that, here’s a nice piece about media companies and data. “Just because you can measure something doesn’t make it important.” It’s looking at how publisher websites gather information and use it but the lessons – not everything is important – are valid as more and more data shops enter the political space.

Then there’s the effect that all this data is having on consumers.

The folks at Axiom are releasing more information about what they have. This is clearly an attempt to keep ahead of any kind of regulation but, well, it’s probably too little too late. Even more interesting: We gave Axiom’s data review site a try and well, for accuracy, we’re NOT impressed.

Google’s doing its bit to stay ahead of regulation, in this case Congress efforts to pass “Do Not Track” legislation. The search and online ad giant is starting to give up on cookie-targeting. Cookie targeting has had a bit of a vogue in political circles so this move by Google is a good indication that the technology – which matches web browsing history with location – is going away.

We’ve written before about how the increased use of mobile leaves web browser targeting in the dust. But here’s a very nice piece talking about Twitter and its purchase of a mobile ad exchange. Twitter doesn’t have to cookie you to learn more – you tell it plenty with those little 140-character wise cracks.