Tuesday, October 19, 2004

When is Data Mining not Data Mining

After I taught my nice, dry, boring exposition on Data Mining in Munich, Raman Kohli (the Ascend liason who accompanied me from Redmond to make sure I didn't screw up too badly), came in and suggested the idea that data mining should never be referred to as such. That you should talk only about the solutions--Market Basket Analysis, Trend Analysis, etc--and not even use the words 'data mining'. Now, I managed to ignore most of what Raman said to me, but this one actually clicked home. Each of the Data Mining models is actually built to solve a particular type of problem, or analysis, and 'data mining' just happens to be the engine or technique that populates the model with coefficients from actual data.

So, in London, I changed the title slide of the Data Mining section to 'Market Basket Analysis and other Cool Tools'. Raman thought I was making fun of him, which I wasn't (OK, maybe I was, but just a little).

-- Reed

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