Last week, I made the following statement:
In theory, the availability of data should improve our ability to measure performance. In reality, the measurement revolution has not taken place. It turns out that measuring performance requires careful design and deliberate collection of the right types of data -- while Big Data is the processing and analysis of whatever data drops onto our laps. Ergo, we are far from fulfilling the promise.
This is such an important point that I'm repeating it at the top of this post.
The title of the post is taken from Sean J. Taylor's on the same topic. Highlights:
Making your own data means you are creating new facts about the world which gives you privileged access to scientific findings.
If you are the creator of your data set, then you are likely to have a great understanding the data generating process. Blindly downloading someone’s CSV file means you are much more likely to make assumptions which do not hold in the data.
The last point is a major takeaway from Numbersense (link), and in particular, read the chapters on economic indicators.
Read Sean's entire post here. You really should.