01.04.2016 | Ausgabe 4/2016

Thinking Tools

for Understanding Media Monitoring Data

(Bildquelle: Simen Frostad, www.bridgetech.tv)

Some of the great advances in human life have come about through material innovation – the invention of the wheel, or the discovery of radium – and some through changing the way that we think about the world. The theory of relativity or double-entry accounting, for example, can be seen as ‘thinking tools’ that allow people to organize and make sense of information in new ways, with profound and far-reaching effects. The more the sum of human knowledge increases, the more we need tools to explore, manipulate and mine it.

When a technology is complex, we need to know a lot about it to keep it working well. If it is a particle accelerator, or a mission to Saturn’s rings, a vast amount of monitoring data is necessary, and there are very highly qualified expert scientists to interpret this data. But as complex technology filters further and further into everyday life, the amount of monitoring data typically overtakes the amount of expertise available to make sense of it; there are simply not enough highly knowledgeable experts around to understand all the technology that powers our world today.

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