Just by chance I heard this half-hour programme tonight. Although it didn’t provoke many new thoughts for a professional statistician, I thought it was well-made and engaging, and worth a listen, despite a wearily sceptical tone. Depending on how far in the future you are reading this, and how far from Broadcasting House you are, you might be able to “listen again”.
As one of the talking heads said at one point, it’s a bit of a misnomer, because the quantification is not what’s interesting, it’s the patterns you wouldn’t otherwise have noticed, and how they make you reflect on how you live your life. The one thing that I have collected, my GPS location every 5 minutes, has made me reflect on how many days are spent going from home to office and back again, while the map makes it unquestionably clear that I actually live in one of the world’s most famous and exciting cities but rarely go into its famous and exciting bits, and that actually might make me live my everyday life a little bit differently. Thanks, data.