15 episodes

No time to read? Listen whilst you make a coffee. Exploring research in everyday life through a spoken blog.

In The Know Rob Rowlands Research

    • Business

No time to read? Listen whilst you make a coffee. Exploring research in everyday life through a spoken blog.

    Threads of Data

    Threads of Data

    With the ever increasing ease and low cost to collecting data, it is easy to lose sight of its purpose. Yet without a clear understanding of what that data can do or what you can do with it, it quickly becomes meaningless and often a burden.
    In todays episode I will weave a thread through concerns about the data social media apps collect, the amount of information on an application form and the helpful applicability of GDPR, all to illustrate why the purpose of information is more important than its quantity.

    • 6 min
    Getting Smarter with Data

    Getting Smarter with Data

    We live in a world of smart devices designed help us do things more effectively and efficiently. But what else do we need to know to ensure we really do feel those benefits. 

    In this episode I ask whether smart meters can save you money and save the planet? If they are to be a means to these ends, what else do we need to be aware of to achieve those outcomes. 

    Let’s take a look at getting smarter with data.

    https://www.robrowlands.co.uk/smart-data/

    • 8 min
    Proxy Measures

    Proxy Measures

    You are in the supermarket and you buy a huge cream cake. You are also on a diet. Does this mean you intend to break your dieting?

    There are times when the things we want to observe and measure are difficult to get a precise angle on. From the underlying motivations of voters in the Brexit referendum to what expressed religious beliefs in the census say about Britishness, one measure is often substituted for another when we are trying to make sense of the world. We call these proxy measures. 

    So what is a proxy? And what does and doesn't it tell us?

    Read the blog and find all the links at https://www.robrowlands.co.uk/measuring-by-proxy.

    • 7 min
    Filling the hole in the road.

    Filling the hole in the road.

    When I hit a pothole in the road whilst driving I reported it to the local council and whilst the hole was filled in as a repair it was already showing signs of weakness.

    When faced with a problem or a challenge, a quick fix is often employed. But how can taking a step back and gathering more information - about the context of the problem and the fit of the solution - provide a more effective and sustainable outcome? 

    Let's take a look.

    • 7 min
    Really Timely Data

    Really Timely Data

    Real time data is almost inescapable. But does it baffles more than inform? And what are the tips to using it more effectively yourself? 

    With examples from the world of TV sports coverage I look at what real time information we see, how helpful it is and the times when it starts to get in the way. 

    I will leave you with 3 questions to ask about any real time data so you can use it much more effectively. 

    https://www.robrowlands.co.uk/really-timely-data/

    • 6 min
    Is "nul points" really that bad?

    Is "nul points" really that bad?

    Strep back to Eurovision 2021, a long awaited return of the annual song contest and a great night for everyone except the UK and James Newsome. But did receiving zero points really mean his song was so bad. How might it have come about? And when can constraining choices be a helpful technique to use?

    The blog is also available to read https://www.robrowlands.co.uk/constrained-choice/

    • 5 min

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