Data is a set of discrete values that convey information. These values can be quantified or qualitative and describe facts, statistics, or other basic units of meaning. Data may be in symbols, numerical values, or a combination of both. Each state or individual data collection element is known as a datum.
Data comes in many different forms and can be generated in many places. It can be structured or unstructured and helps people make better decisions, solve problems, and evaluate performance. Data can be discrete or continuous and can be presented graphically using histograms. Regardless of its form, data is important for many applications.
The word data is pluralized from the Latin word datum. It means “given.” This type of information is often used to describe a collection of facts. These facts can be input into a computer, processed, and stored. They can also be displayed through words and graphs. This information is useful for making decisions, but it’s not the only thing that data can be used for.
Data can be qualitative or quantitative. A good example is a student’s height or weight. These can be used to determine an average for a class. It’s also possible to use data to find the tallest or shortest classmate. Data can be used to tell a great deal about things and people.