“Tame” the data makers

I’ve heard of “taming data.” But the week before last at Strata I heard it in a new context: taming behavior.

Taming data has been “nichy,” as fellow TDWI writer Steve Swoyer puts it. He says, “It doubtless explains the etymology of, for example, Tamr.”

But Swoyer pushes on from there, as Swoyer knows how to do.

[Notice the] consonance between to wrangle and to tame. Both are grounded in the same metaphorical frame. Both are grounded in the same metaphor. This pre-conscious framing/understanding of the issue is more interesting than the stupid terms.

Former IBM sales engineer Lamont Lockwood, now the “Integration Expert,” sees two definitions. One is simple: to straighten and calm streaming data. “You don’t have time to fix it later,” he explains. “You need smart models to keep up.”

That leads to Lamont’s second, “nefarious” definition: taming the users who produce the data. “You’ll be trackable every day and every minute,” he muses, “like call-center workers….This is happening.”

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