Why we struggle with Data Overload

I just found Linda Stone's writing on the back of a Henry Jenkins article. Boy is she smart. This article's so great I'm just going to rip it. She quotes Dee Hock, the Founder of Visa and his definition of how information evolves. She then uses it to describe how technology is evolving us, how we’re evolving technology and how both are evolving culture.
  • Noise becomes data when it has a cognitive pattern.
  • Data becomes information when assembled into a coherent whole, which can be related to other information.
  • Information becomes knowledge when integrated with other information in a form useful for making decisions and determining actions.
  • Knowledge becomes understanding when related to other knowledge in a manner useful in anticipating, judging and acting.
  • Understanding becomes wisdom when informed by purpose, ethics, principles, memory and projection.
Further, she maps this evolution to a timeline:
  • 1945-1965 - Noise to Data
  • 1965-1985 - Data to Information
  • 1985-2005 - Information to Knowledge
  • 2005-2025 - Knowledge to Understanding
  • 2025-2045 - Understanding to Wisdom
Today, we are Knowledge Workers evolving into Understanding Workers. Understanding Workers use technology to anticipate, judge and act. Think about it. This is what we’re doing with FitBit, Quantified Self, 23andMe.com, Facebook, and so many other technologies of this era.
As we move into an Era of Conscious Computing, we’ll also be moving deeper into Understanding and closer toward Wisdom.

Data gets a bad rep sometimes but as we all know, in the right hands it can be pretty amazing...