Limiting data in search of information
Neil Postman pointed out that bureaucracies control the flow of information. A form, for example, has no room for all the information, just the stuff that’s requested. It’s impossible to share all the information about anything, particularly at scale.
The deluge that is the internet is an opportunity and a problem. With a few clicks, we’re able to get more data. And there’s no end in sight, since new data is posted faster than we can consume it.
If you want to get better at astronomy, it doesn’t pay to get up to speed on all the books about gardening that you can find. Or texts on gambling, posts on the stock market or tweets about today’s political gambits. They won’t help you learn what you seek.
It’s easy to be in favor of more data. After all, until we reach a certain point, more data is the best way to make a better decision. But then, fairly suddenly, more isn’t better. It’s simply a way to become confused or to stall.
If you want more information, be careful about the data you seek out.