Data, information & Knowledge

Relating to OCR, Unit 1

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  • Created by: Amy
  • Created on: 02-05-09 17:17



Data - raw facts and figures before they have been processed [no meaning by itself]

Information - Data which has been given meaning by being put into context or processed into a useful format
Information = Data + [structure] + [context] + meaning

Knowledge - When you use a rule/set of rules to manipulate the information

The data cycle - The overall process of data being converted to output

>Input -> Processing -> Output> v

^ <- -<feedback loop < - -<

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Data & data types

Quality of data is important !!
GIGO = Garbage in, garbage out !

Data must be: accurate, reliable, up-to-date, complete, reasonable & correct
Data can be direct or indirect
[Information can be static or dynamic]

Data Types:
Number: integer, real number
Group of characters (letters & num) = string
One of 2 conditions = Boolean (e.g. true/false)

Coded Data:
e.g. when a person's gender is stored on a computer, often coded as M or F

+ less memory to store
+ Quicker/more convenient
+ Validated easier

- Difficult to remember codes
- Accuracy may be lost
- Difficult to code value judgements
- Some codes hard to understand

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Value of information

better quality info = more valuble !
It's good quality if...
- there's enough for people to make decisions
- it's accurate & up to date
- presented clearly (no misinterpretation)
- relevant to user
- easy to understand

However, this costs time and money ! £££
- staff to update data
- security systems to ensure data doesn't get changed
- enough storage space
- software to manipulate/organise to useful

Producing information can cost money ! £££
Hardware - buying, upgrading, maintaining
Software - purchased, organised, technical support, training for staff

Consumables - items used in process

Personnel - new staff to collate, enter, process & output information

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