# Role of Information Farrokh Alemi, Ph.D.. Torturing Data Until They Confess I only have one question. What is 1 plus 1? Mathematician: “For sure 2”

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Role of Information Farrokh Alemi, Ph.D.

Torturing Data Until They Confess I only have one question. What is 1 plus 1? Mathematician: “For sure 2”

Torturing Data Until They Confess I only have one question. What is 1 plus 1? Statistician: “Over long samples the average is 1.99”

Torturing Data Until They Confess I only have one question. What is 1 plus 1? System Analyst: “What do you want it to be?”

What is Information? “..facts to be used as a basis of discussion or deciding something” Data alone represent observations Data is not always correct and it can be distorted Information occurs as a result of processing the data

Other Definitions What is known beyond random chance predictions When data helps reduce available alternatives When data is processed to become meaningful for the given situation

Other Definitions What is known beyond random chance predictions When data helps reduce available alternatives When data is processed to become meaningful for the given situation Reduced Alternatives

Travels of Data 1.Acquisition of data. 2.Classification of data. 3.Storage of data. 4.Retrieval of data. 5.Editing of data. 6.Verification and quality control of process that produced the data. 7.Aggregation of data. 8. Hypothesis generation 9. Description of data 10. Test of analysis assumptions 11. Analysis 12. Extrapolation of implications of findings 13. Presentation of data 14. Distribution of reports 15. Evaluation of effectiveness of reports

Travels of Data 1.Acquisition of data. 2.Classification of data. 3.Storage of data. 4.Retrieval of data. 5.Editing of data. 6.Verification and quality control of process that produced the data. 7.Aggregation of data. 8. Hypothesis generation 9. Description of data 10. Test of analysis assumptions 11. Analysis 12. Extrapolation of implications of findings 13. Presentation of data 14. Distribution of reports 15. Evaluation of effectiveness of reports

Information Systems Hardware, software, People Information processing is the essential element of management

Medical Informatics The study and use of computers and information in health care Association of American Medical Colleges “Medical informatics is a developing body of knowledge and a set of techniques concerning the organizational management of information in support of medical research, education, and patient care…combines medical science with several technologies and disciplines in computer sciences and provides methodologies by which these can contribute to better medical care”

Investment in IT Since 1965, investment in IT has tripled in the US Use of IT has changed how we work and now information workers are more common

Investment in IT Some costs have gone down –Processing costs –Storage costs –Transmission costs –Cost of input/output devices –Marketing costs

How Costs Have Dropped? 1.1950s processing costs drops 2.1960s storage costs drops 3.1970s transmission costs drops 4.1980s input/output costs drops 5.1990s marketing costs drops 6.2000s broadband and wireless

Healthcare IT Investment Health care expenditures account for 1/7 of the US economy IT expenditures by industry –Transportation 14% –Banking 6% –Healthcare 2%

Information Seeking Behavior A critical behavior that occurs continuously Information search is any purposeful activity leading to collecting data and processing it to become information Organizations control information –Sharing info leads to improved coordination –Need to know

Exercise in Detection of Patterns Search for information starts with assumptions What is the next number if the first few are: 1, 5, 10, ?

Exercise in Detection of Patterns Search for information starts with assumptions What is the next number if the first few are: 1, 5, 10, 17, ?

Exercise in Detection of Patterns Search for information starts with assumptions What is the next number if the first two are: 1, 5, 10, ? f(x) = X 2 + 1

Barriers to Information Seeking Time Decision making characteristics Structural Cultural Organizational policies and procedures Individual Technical issues Cost of search “Not part of my job” Fear of unknown

Distortion of Information 1.Plunging in before full examination 2.Solving wrong problems 3.Narrow view 4.Overconfidence 5.Shortsighted shortcuts 6.Shooting from the hip, without aids 7.Equating popularity with accuracy 8.Fooling yourself 9.Not keeping track Decision Traps: Ten Barriers to Brilliant Decision-making and how to Overcome Them by J. Edward Russo, Paul J. H. Schoemaker - 1989 - 280 pages

Why Is There So Much Ignorance in Organized Work? Managers control information release Ignorance is bliss Ignorance is productive –Need to know Organization structures are unproductive –Informal organization structures are key to success

How Should Information Systems Help Clinicians? Frame the problem better Gather information more intelligently Be aware of the missing data Use systematic processes to come to conclusions Seek and learn from feedback by keeping track of success and failures

Take Home Lessons? Difference between data, information and search Cost structure of information technology Employees may distort information and face barriers to information search Organization structures influence information processing Tools to assess informal information structures

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