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What Executives Don’t Understand About Big Data  

Executives need to understand that big data is not about subordinating managerial decisions to automated algorithms but deciding what kinds of data should enhance or transform user experiences. Big Data should be neither servant nor master; properly managed, it becomes a new medium for shaping how people and their technologies interact.

That’s why it’s a tad disingenuous when Google-executive-turned-Yahoo-CEO-thought-leader Marissa Mayer declares “data is apolitical” and that her old company succeeds because it is so (big) data-driven: “It all comes down to data. Run a 1% test [on 1% of the audience] and whichever design does best against the user-happiness metrics over a two-week period is the one we launch. We have a very academic environment where we’re looking at data all the time. We probably have somewhere between 50 and 100 experiments running on live traffic, everything from the default number of results to underlined links to how big an arrow should be. We’re trying all those different things

via What Executives Don’t Understand About Big Data – Michael Schrage – Harvard Business Review.

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Written by Guru Kirthigavasan

September 15th, 2012 at 1:52 am

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