Is our data good enough to give away?

When we bring people together to look at the issues we have, they come up with all sorts of crackpot ideas.  Why is that?  Perhaps they are working blind.  Perhaps they don’t know the scale and complexity because they don’t have access to the underlying data and information.  They simply don’t know.  Perhaps we overcomplicate things because we sit in amongst them day after day.  Perhaps we have become too used to the data and information.  Perhaps we don’t see it any more.

I was watching a programme about the brain last night by David Eagleman.  I’m a bit behind.  He said that six times as much traffic goes from the visual cortex to be processed than comes from the eyes.  So what we see is made up of six parts from our internalised world model and one part from what we see.  Perhaps we have lost sight of six sevenths of the data and information at our disposal?

When we come together to look at issues do we come up with the same solutions over and over again?

To overcome this, we should give away our data.  We should make it available so that everyone can see it and in a way that they can play around with it.  If they find something interesting or worthy of further explanation, then they should be able to upload it again so that others can see what they can.

But we can’t do that.  Our data isn’t in a good shape.  We know that it does not have the quality that we would like.  Does data quality really matter?  Is there such a thing as perfect data?  Is it good enough?

The question we should be asking ourselves is, if our data is not good enough to release how are we using it to run our services?

Yes, if we publish all we can, people are going to see things that are wrong, that don’t make sense and that need putting right yet isn’t this a good thing?  The quality of the data will improve which will lead to a better understanding by the public of the issues we are facing.  This in turn will lead to better decision making as the data we rely upon will be more accurate.

This has to be a good thing?  We should give our data away.

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