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Are we living in a Big Data bubble?

Sander Duivestein
January 08, 2013

In the last week of December a very interesting article by Steve Lohr in the New York Times caught my eye. The title of the article “Sure, Big Data Is Great. But So Is Intuition” triggered me. The main question of the article is: “Aren’t we depending to much on the intelligence of our machines?” There is a famous TedX video “Beware online “filter bubbles” with Eli Pariser. He talks about the fact that we get trapped in a “filter bubble” and don’t get exposed to information that could challenge or broaden our worldview. Eli Pariser argues powerfully that this will ultimately prove to be bad for us and bad for democracy. The main reason for the existence of this filter bubble is the fact that the algorithms that are shaping our digital world are too simple-minded, rather than too smart. Isn’t this also true for the world of Big Data? According to the article “Why big data might be more about automation than insights” on the website Gigaom: “Big data technologies are like manufacturing robots: they let people do what they’re already trying to do, only faster than before and at a much greater scale. But as with any other product, that analyzed data is nothing without humans to do something with it.” So shouldn’t we humans rely more on intuition than on the insights that Big Data might offer?

About the author

Trend Watcher – New Media, Trend Analyst VINT | Netherlands
Sander Duivestein (1971) is a highly acclaimed and top-rated trendwatcher, an influential author, an acclaimed keynote speaker, a digital business entrepreneur, and a strategic advisor on disruptive innovations. His main focus is the impact of new technologies on people, businesses and society.


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