Data Around Me

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When I decided to look for data in my neighborhood, my house, and my day to day life, I interpreted it as I do everything - visually. I wasn’t necessarily trying to make sense of data in the data sense, but I was looking for things that “look” like data.

If you heard the first episode of our podcast, Small Data, you probably heard me rambling on about how data is dots. That was me trying to make sense of what data means, at least to me, and as usual I described what it looks like, rather than its definition. When I think of data I think of interconnected dots, charts, computer programs, weird codes…But it was that conversation that actually helped expose me to the idea that data really is all around us, in ways that we don’t even realize. I once read about data in our lives being described as “information landscapes,” and I loved that term. Data is everywhere and it’s in everything we do.

Step on the scale in the morning? That’s data.

Pick up your mail every day? The way the entire postal service functions is based on data, but in my photo, you’ll also notice that in my tiny island town, the way it looks is also data.

What about your car dashboard? Can you say data?!

So, in my ongoing attempt to make sense of and recognize data in my surroundings, I present you with a couple of the things I saw when I went looking for it - both in purely visual terms and in actuality.



How old are you, tree?


Utility lines - the point at which I tried to find data in a “deeper” way.