This website covers topics on knowledge management, personal effectiveness, theory of constraints, amongst other topics. Opinions expressed here are strictly those of the owner, Jack Vinson, and those of the commenters.

Information reduces uncertainty

Dale H. Emery defines Information

  1. n. Data that reduces uncertainty.

... For a while I was worried that this definition, focused so specifically on reducing uncertainty, was too limiting. Why uncertainty? And why reducing uncertainty? What about data that increases uncertainty? Suppose I discover a datum that invalidates a key "fact" that I thought I knew, and therefore leaves me uncertain about many other "facts." It seems to me that that would be information, too.

Dale tells us about several versions of this he has used and likes, and we are all familiar with the data-information-knowledge-wisdom hierarchy that works (and then doesn't) for many of us (search for many articles with these terms).

It's interesting that he ties it so specifically to (un)certainty, rather than the more familiar approach to information being data collected and contextualized in some way.  I particularly like the link to uncertainty because most people don't like dealing with uncertainty in making decisions.

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