data exploration in the Cream City
A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
[D]ata work is as much about joining things together as it is selecting and pruning. Like building a data chair — you turn a dataset on the data lathe, and then glue it to the appropriate slot in another dataset.
— David Mimno on data carpentry
It’s an absolute myth that you can send an algorithm over raw data and have insights pop up.
— Jeffrey Heer, in NYT article on big data and janitorial work.
We are strange creatures, sometimes brutal, not always photogenic, often delicate. We’re fascinated by metrics, big pictures and endless horizons of possibility. And we always, always want more.