New Book: Stephen Few’s “Big Data, Big Dupe” Smackdown

Five years ago, in 2013, two emerging advocates for Big Data raised its public profile to the highest level it had enjoyed by then, and possibly since. They punched through the oblivion of anyone who needed to hear about it, but had not been vouchsafed the secret handshakes; and too many who tried to understand it and couldn’t; or who didn’t understand it, but thought they did.

The book was sensationally entitled Big Data: A Revolution That Will Transform How We Live, Work, and Think, by Viktor Mayer-Schonberger and Kenneth Cukier (New York, NY: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt). (Hereafter, M-S&C.) It was a finalist for the Financial Times Business Book of the Year. Since then, it seems anyone with experience doing data and analytics has followed with book-length opinions. But M-S&C’s series of sweeping claims have yet to be superseded by anyone.

Author: Bill Luker Jr


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