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Data mining is a useful, and well used, tool in many industries. More useful, however, is a targeted and concise analysis of the data collected.

For instance, I heard an account of U.S. Army Intelligence once trying to use data mining to determine connections and commonalities between terrorist attacks, particularly the individuals involved. One of the people the data-mining program identified was Condoleezza Rice, the U.S. Secretary of State at the time. This example illustrates that while data mining can unearth a wealth of information, it takes discriminating analysis to make sure we are not just making connections, but the right connections.

In fact, making meaningful connections is now a reading comprehension strategy, strangely enough called Making Connections, which is being taught to grade school students. The strategy involves linking what is being read to what the reader already knows, whether it is from their personal experience or from other things they have read. For instance, someone reading “The Old Man and the Sea” may be reminded of seeing the ocean on a recent family vacation or while remembering similarities to “Moby Dick.” While personal experience may have a greater impact, both reference to personal experience and other text is said to increase comprehension in what is being read, particularly in early childhood development.

While the technology has progressed to collect all the information we can want or need, analysis tools have progressed as well, including software and artificial intelligence that can help us make use of the information we really need, all while knowing Condoleezza Rice is not a terrorist.

In the auto industry, another step forward in this idea could be connected worker technology. As author Eric Whitley writes, “As our world becomes increasingly influenced by digital innovation, the rise of connected worker technology marks a significant turning point in our approach to industrial operations.”

Particularly for the quality industry, it’s not only about analyzing data, but also the analysis of our systems and operations.

So check out Eric’s article, “5 Important Ways Connected Worker Tech Benefits the Automotive Industry,” as well as “Advances in Automation and Robotics Make CMMs More Efficient, Accurate,” “Measurement Systems Analysis,” and “e-Powertrain Electric Motor Gear Train Simulated Testing with the Digital Twin,” all in this month’s Quality.

Enjoy and thanks for reading!