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David Loshin

Welcome to my BeyeNETWORK Blog. This is going to be the place for us to exchange thoughts, ideas and opinions on all aspects of the information quality and data integration world. I intend this to be a forum for discussing changes in the industry, as well as how external forces influence the way we treat our information asset. The value of the blog will be greatly enhanced by your participation! I intend to introduce controversial topics here, and I fully expect that reader input will "spice it up." Here we will share ideas, vendor and client updates, problems, questions and, most importantly, your reactions. So keep coming back each week to see what is new on our Blog!

About the author >

David is the President of Knowledge Integrity, Inc., a consulting and development company focusing on customized information management solutions including information quality solutions consulting, information quality training and business rules solutions. Loshin is the author of The Practitioner's Guide to Data Quality Improvement, Master Data Management, Enterprise Knowledge Management: The Data Quality Approachand Business Intelligence: The Savvy Manager's Guide. He is a frequent speaker on maximizing the value of information. David can be reached at loshin@knowledge-integrity.com or at (301) 754-6350.

Editor's Note: More articles and resources are available in David's BeyeNETWORK Expert Channel. Be sure to visit today!

Recently in Dead Fish That Think Category

Not really a surprise, and one that we discussed over at this blog note, but apparently the data reported regarding stimulus money spending is not immune to data flaws. This article over at cnn.com discusses some of the simple types of errors appearing in the jobs data, such as hundreds of thousands of dollars spent in Arizona's 52nd, 15th and 86th congressional districts, despite that sparse state's only having eight congressional districts.

I especially like dthe quote from Wisconsin representative Dave Obey: "Credibility counts in government, and stupid mistakes like this undermine it."

Posted November 25, 2009 6:26 AM
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Yesterday I read a great article about neuroscientist Craig Bennet who purchased an Atlantic salmon and put it under an fMRI machine to scan its (presumably non-working) brain. Oh, yes, by the way, it was a *dead* salmon. With the fish in the scanner, it was shown a series of pictures, and the salmon was "asked to determine what emotion the individual in the photo must have been experiencing."

While this already sounds like a fishy story, wait - it gets better: during the scanning, it appeared that "voxels" (video images indicating activity) showed up in the fish's brain. The simple conclusion? Dead fish can think!

Of course, that is ridiculous, and the purpose of the scanning was not to show that dead fish have brain activity when asked questions, but to look at how on occaision, random noise that creeps into these scans appears to show false positive information, with the objective to suggest more rigorous validation of statistical methods when attempting to filter out random noise so as to prevent drawing conclusions from what is potentially flawed data.

While I would call this a less orthodox process for establishing the value of data quality, it certainly provides a general lesson regarding quality of information on output from a reporting activitiy.


Posted September 24, 2009 6:09 AM
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