The overflow of data all around us is old news. And it seems that each day, more data is produced. But data itself is not very useful on its own. It only becomes useful if it can be converted into knowledge.
From data to knowledge?
And the first step in converting data to knowledge is for it to be collected into a single place where it can be analyzed and then converted to knowledge. That is what aggregators do.
We have taken a first step into the world of aggregation. That is what search engines and social media platforms do for us. They aggregate lots of data and offer us services based on their aggregation.
But these web platforms suck. They suck because they do not help us develop knowledge. Remember
from data to knowledge!!!!
I think aggregators that empower us to make that conversion are a next step in the world of digital transformation. Not just for big corporations that want to figure out how to sell more stuff. For all of us who are trying to get ahead in life. I call these “heroic aggregators”. And I love the idea!
I was inspired to write this by Fred Wilson’s post where he complained that he needed a home data aggregator. Thanks Fred!
I am experimenting with this idea. Here is one story — the world is waking up to the idea that our data has value. Not only that, companies are taking our data and getting value out of it without our knowledge or consent. Worse still, they sometimes do not protect it very well. Our data can be stolen by hackers or other bad actors and we can get damaged. This has created a new area of law called “data protection”. Europe is leading the way with its “General Data Protection Regulation” or GDPR. The GDPR requires companies to have a person or persons who are in charge of complying with the GDPR. Those persons are called “Data Protection Officers” or DPO’s.
So far so good?
Ok. So the DPO is in charge of getting his or her company to comply with the GDPR (and a lot of other related laws). That may sound simple, but how do they do that? Good question. No one knows the answer. Keep in mind that the DPO does not have any power to do anything inside a big company without the help of management and cooperation of other staff. Not only that, the DPO has to keep up with a tsunami of information (data flow) about data protection. Yikes! Tough job!
So I have build a heroic data aggregator for DPO’s called “DPO Advocate”. This is brand new. Its goal is to bring together all of the data that a DPO needs to “level up” and get his or her job done better. Check it out!