Data as a verb

Posted to Statistics  |  Tags: ,  |  Nathan Yau

As in, you data me, I data you, and they data us. Jer Thorp argues for a verbified data, because after all, it’s already in a grammatical shift with the whole big data thing. Just take it a step further already.

Since data has already endured such a drastic grammatical shift, perhaps we can persuade the gods of common usage to shift the word’s accepted part-of-speech entirely: can we make data into a verb? In case this still seems too outlandish, consider two synonymic neighbours of data: record, and measure. Both of these words exist as nouns (I made a record), as verbs (We measured the temperature of the room) and indeed as verbal nouns (They found a list of measurements and recordings). In comparison, isn’t it strange to keep data confined to the dull, inactive realm of the noun?

I approve of this message.

It’s no accident I have a page titled Learning to Data.


Pizza Place Geography

Most of the major pizza chains are within a 5-mile radius of where I live, so I have my pick, …

A Day in the Life of Americans

I wanted to see how daily patterns emerge at the individual level and how a person’s entire day plays out. So I simulated 1,000 of them.

Where People Run in Major Cities

There are many exercise apps that allow you to keep track of your running, riding, and other activities. Record speed, …

Jobs Charted by State and Salary

Jobs and pay can vary a lot depending on where you live, based on 2013 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Here’s an interactive to look.