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|WikiProject Computer science||(Rated Start-class, Top-importance)|
Code is data
In modern languages code can be passed around via closures or delegates, edited, and persisted to databases much the same way any other data could be manipulated. The idea that anything that code isn't data is incorrect, as code can certainly be data at times.
A Standard Definition?
The book "Principles of Data Management" by Keith Gordon, published 2007 by British Computer Society states on page 3 that "data is a re-interpretable representation of information in a formalised manner suitable for communication, interpretation or processing." I like this! This recognises that we start with information, convert it to data, transform it to new data, then convert back to information again. I am not sure why the extra words make it better than, say, “A representation of information in a formalised manner suitable for electronic communication and processing”. Anyway, crucial to data management is the idea that this data should be capable of combination with other data to create new data which is capable of transformation back into information. Keith ascribes the definition to ISO/IEC 2382-1:1993 which I see is a standard called “Information technology - Vocabulary - Part 1: Fundamental terms Edition: 3.0” and costs £50 from the International Organization for Standardization/International Electrotechnical Commission / 01-Nov-1993 / 32 pages. I think this should get some recognition in this article, but I am a wiki novice and would not dare to begin with a direct edit. ChrisMaynard3 (talk) 21:09, 28 March 2008 (UTC)
Standard Definition? There's a number of definitions and formalizations of what data is. e.g., the relational model, information theory, etc. Perhaps this article should reference these sources (and incorporate your definition above), before people start adding things about code vs. data. —Preceding unsigned comment added by 126.96.36.199 (talk) 00:57, 1 May 2008 (UTC)
Is it "day-tah' or 'dah-tah'? -Ravedave 19:20, 9 February 2006 (UTC)
It's both, depending on your accent. 188.8.131.52 01:51, 4 February 2007 (UTC)
Code vs data
Shouldn't the example using the wordprocessor be more elaborate? Is the string on the button to start the spellchecker code or data? Fuzzbox 16:23, 1 August 2006 (UTC)
- One could argue the point either way, I suppose. Perhaps there should be discussion on this "blurry" aspect of code vs data also? I really wish I could fine some more reliable sources for attribution of this stuff, but this appears to be one of those things that everyone "just knows". —DragonHawk (talk) 01:45, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
Questioning the redirection this page claims over "digital information". I am trying to write a learning resource for digital information literacy and wanted to point to a wikipedia article on digital information which might encompass a wide range of information in digital formats - audio, video, images, documents, AND data. BTW. Great intro to data you have here! --Leighblackall 22:26, 19 March 2007 (UTC)
- Um, I'm pretty sure video, audio, etc., all qualify as "data". No? —DragonHawk (talk) 00:45, 20 March 2007 (UTC)
I found this page when I was researching grammar before reverting an edit that changed "data is" to "data are" on a computing related page. From this I have learned that in computing, "data" is often used as a mass noun. (mass noun; I learned something new today :)
- Eight bytes of data are transmitted .... (enumerated with units and therefore "data" is plural)
- The data is transmitted .... (not enumerated and no units, a mass noun and therefore "data" is singular)
You could argue against this, but then you would have to argue that "a single byte of data" should be phrased "a single byte of datum".
If you disagree with me, then try to convince a programmer that the proper term is "datum-byte". (I'd pay money to be ringside for that.)
Final note: the current first paragraph of this Data_(computing) article uses both "Digital data is" and "Digital data are". Which is correct? Or are both acceptable usage? EE JRW (talk) 01:02, 23 August 2014 (UTC)
Data are "the quantities, characters, or symbols on which operations are performed by a computer, being stored and transmitted in the form of electrical signals and recorded on magnetic, optical, or mechanical recording media." This is the definition from the Oxford Dictionaries. This definition may be found here: Oxford Dictionaries. The significant advantage of this definition is that it does not reference the term information. Information has meaning (to someone) and relates to knowledge and the transmission of knowledge. But data may not have meaning. For example: if I create a string from (a) an Egyptian hieroglyphic, (b) a letter from the English alphabet, (c) a Chinese logogram, and (d) an Old Norse rune this will definitely be data. But it won't be information because it has no meaning.
This relates to the fact that data processing is not the same as information processing -- even though these two terms appear to be conflated here in the wikipedia. SunSw0rd (talk) 18:18, 11 October 2012 (UTC)
The word "data" as used in mobile phone pricing
I can't find a definition of the word data as used by mobile phone companies. The word appears in practically every mobile phone-related advertisement, but I'm sure they are not targeting IT specialists or statisticians. Phone companies seem to divide their services into "data" and "minutes", which they charge quite differently. For example, with such-and-such a package you get 50MB of data to use in one month, and 500 minutes of talktime. I've never been able to work out what this kind of data is. To me, data means numerical records of physical things like temperature, or how much electricity the country used over the last 5 years, or the speed and location of a rocket. I would be surprised if many people bought their mobile phones in order to send this kind of data to each other, so I conclude that I have not yet got a handle on what mobile phone companies mean by "data". (My best guess is that they mean internet usage, because with my megabytes of data I can apparently do Google searches and look at websites. But what prompted anybody to call internet usage "data"? I know that using the internet involves sending ones and zeros which are numbers and therefore sort of data; but voice calls are also transmitted as ones and zeros and yet are invariably distinguished from data.)
So what do mobile phone companies mean by "data"? UBJ 43X (talk) 09:49, 11 May 2016 (UTC)