What is Data?
Here are some items of data:
A, 20, DOG, 3.1415927, ABC123, +++
But what do they mean? Who knows? They could mean anything!
Data values don’t have any meaning unless we put them into context (context means a setting or circumstance).
For instance, in the above example what does the value 20 mean?
20 cm? 20 minutes? 20 cats?
Without a context the value 20 is meaningless. But, if we provide a context for our data, it becomes something far more useful: information
What is Information?
Without knowing the context (what the data actually represents) the data is just a meaningless collection of numbers
However, if we are told that the values represent the ISBNs of books, the values now have a context.
With context, they have meaning - they are now information.