BASIC SEMANTICS, Blog

Language is more powerful than data

Data is powerful, but what limits its power is that which produces and subsequently that which consumes data. It is purpose produced, and purpose consumed. Purpose is the problem because inherent in the purpose is intent, intent upon the production of an outcome.

Language is different; it is a raw material that can be configured to produce a virtually unlimited number of things and outcomes. While data augments perspective, language transforms, affecting emotion, knowledge, relationship, and comprehension. If you have participated in a survey where the possible responses offered did not represent your response, too bad. Your preferred response was not provided for in the model designed to produce data. Language has real power, the power of expression, the power of influence, and the power of knowledge.

Technology and statistics that leverage data can analyze music, but not understand how one might feel when they listen. The same holds true for language as it does for music, ask your data team to analyze poetry and gauge their response and puzzlement.

Language is powerful in the same way a single piano and a symphony orchestra can perform the same piece of music. Not so different from a student reading a passage of Shakespeare then responding to a message in the pseudo code locution of Twitter or SMS.


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