Some say we are headed for an era of information overload. Others say this is the dawning of a new era of big data.
There are indications that we are moving from information, knowledge to wisdom, the new social era appearing on the horizon.
The Data Impact
A new York Times article titled “Big Data’s Impact In The World” states: The impact of data abundance extends well beyond business. Justin Grimmer, for example, is one of the new breed of political scientists. A 28-year-old assistant professor at Stanford, he combined math with political science in his undergraduate and graduate studies, seeing “an opportunity because the discipline is becoming increasingly data-intensive.” His research involves the computer-automated analysis of blog postings, Congressional speeches and press releases, and news articles, looking for insights into how political ideas spread.The story is similar in fields as varied as science and sports, advertising and public health — a drift toward data-driven discovery and decision-making. “It’s a revolution,” says Gary King, director of Harvard’s Institute for Quantitative Social Science. “We’re really just getting under way. But the march of quantification, made possible by enormous new sources of data, will sweep through academia, business and government. There is no area that is going to be untouched.”
What Changes Will This Create?
The Information Age is characterized by the ability of individuals to transfer information freely, and to have instant access to information that would have been difficult or impossible to find previously. The idea is linked to the concept of a digital age or digital revolution, and carries the ramifications of a shift from traditional industry that the industrial revolution brought through industrialization, to an economy based on the manipulation of information, i.e., an information society.
The age of social wisdom will no longer be fueled by the manipulation of information rather the application of knowledge to gain wisdom about our world, our relations and the discovery of new economies. The current era of knowledge, also known as the knowledge economy, is being fueled by all this online social collaboration and content creation of which all is being deposited into the “virtual library” for future reference and use.
When knowledge reaches a tipping point wisdom is revealed. The era of big data will usher in the age of social wisdom. Social wisdom is represented by the intersection of technology with the human network. The intersection is where the human network, rather than the institutional network, creates new solutions.