Data is the plural form of the word”Datum. The definition for datum is,”a single bit of information”. So the most common definition of data is information. This information can exist in numerous forms:
- as bits and bytes stored digitally
- as words on paper
- or as details floating around in your brain
There’s a distinction between data and information, however. While data, information, and knowledge are closely related conditions, there’s a difference. The purpose ot collecting data is to gain information. This information eventually contributes to knowledge. For instance, the name of a video game is data, an article about the game play is information, and practical tips on the best way best to play the sport is knowledge. In most configurations, this distinction will be insignificant as well as the terms can be used interchangeably.
Data can be qualitative or quantitative and can be measured, analyzed, or visualized. Data goes through some type of refining process, making coherent and readable information from collections of numbers or figures, often called”raw data” Though it’s technically the plural form of the word, it is used as a singular noun in many discussions. However, more scientific writing or speech will nevertheless treat data as plural.