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Difference Between Data and Information

information1Data vs Information

The frequency of the use of the words data and information are very high in our daily lives. Depending on the context the meanings and use of these words differ. Both data and information are types of knowledge or something used to attain knowledge. Though used interchangeably, there are many differences between the meanings of these two words.

Data refers to the lowest abstract or a raw input which when processed or arranged makes meaningful output. It is the group or chunks which represent quantitative and qualitative attributes pertaining to variables. Information is usually the processed outcome of data. More specifically speaking, it is derived from data. Information is a concept and can be used in many domains.

Information can be a mental stimulus, perception, representation, knowledge, or even an instruction. The examples of data can be facts, analysis, or statistics. In computer terms, symbols, characters, images, or numbers are data. These are the inputs for the system to give a meaningful interpretation. In other words, data in a meaningful form is information.

Information can be explained as any kind of understanding or knowledge that can be exchanged with people. It can be about facts, things, concepts, or anything relevant to the topic concerned.

The word information was derived from Latin. The verb from which it is derived is informare, which means ‘to instruct’. It also means giving form to an idea or fact. Data is the plural of the Latin word datum. It can mean ‘to give’. In the realms of mathematics and geometry, the terms data and given are very often used interchangeably. This is how the term was derived for use in computer realm.

If data is at the lowest level in the series, information is placed at the next step. As an example, if you have a list on the Seven Wonders of the World, that is a data; if you have a book giving details about each wonder, it is information.

Data can be in the form of numbers, characters, symbols, or even pictures. A collection of these data which conveys some meaningful idea is information. It may provide answers to questions like who, which, when, why, what, and how.

The raw input is data and it has no significance when it exists in that form. When data is collated or organized into something meaningful, it gains significance. This meaningful organization is information.

Data is often obtained as a result of recordings or observations. For example, the temperature of the days is data. When this data is to be collected, a system or person monitors the daily temperatures and records it. Finally when it is to be converted into meaningful information, the patterns in the temperatures are analyzed and a conclusion about the temperature is arrived at. So information obtained is a result of analysis, communication, or investigation.

1. Data is the lowest level of knowledge and information is the second level.
2. Data by itself alone is not significant. Information is significant by itself.
3. Observations and recordings are done to obtain data, while analysis is done to obtain information.

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  1. what the word is nice

  2. Thank very much for all of them.Now i can separate data from information.

  3. Thank you very much for the useful ……

    information <<< Am I right 🙂

  4. Hey! I really appreciate this one ! it really helps me a lot tnx anyway! :)) more power

  5. the above infrmation has been quite intersting nd helpd me alotzz

    keep dng this kind of wrk lol;;;;

  6. I enjoyed these your topic kindly post the difference between computer and man

  7. Simply put we can say that ‘data which makes sense is information’.

  8. Hey! I really appreciate this one ! it really helps me a lot tnx anyway! ) more power

  9. this helped me alot with my homework…thnx alot!! 🙂

  10. Thanks a ton for this article…

  11. This information has been of immense use to me. Kudos

  12. thnks a lot, this really helped me with my assignment!

  13. thank you for this wonderful article
    i hope i’ll get a high grade 😀

  14. thanks… very useful…. 🙂

  15. Thnks this helps me to do of my home work even to expand my guaindance sytem thnks i like it and you realy mad it

  16. I appreciate these answers. The examples are relatively so simple that a layman can too understand without efforts.

  17. thanku for giving me the useful information, .


  18. Data is basically raw facts and figures. and information is knowledge. both are informative.

  19. Great article about “information”, but a small error regarding “data”.

    “Data” is the plural of “datum”. It is incorrect to say “this data”, “data is”, etc.; the correct phrasing with “data” is always, for example, “These data are…”.

    (background: decades as a medical clinical trials analyst, having created nearly 1000 published medical papers for clients)

  20. Genevieve,SEPTEMBER25,2017:Thanks its help a lot

  21. thank so much


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