When we examine the characteristics of data we can see that it exists in three dimensions, namely its:
- Ø level of detail
- Ø content
- Ø history
These three dimensions on their own go a long way to determining the data volume we currently bandy about when discussing issues of intelligent business analysis.
The concept of the level of ‘detail’ will be discussed later, but we should consider that the examples above describe data in common industries, at the level of the individual transaction. We are basically capturing a row of data reflecting a customer’s behaviour as it corresponds to his use or purchase of a product: a row every time someone makes a flight reservation, a row of data every time someone makes a telephone call etc. It is possible to go to an even deeper level of detail than the examples we are using here (for example to record all the events of an individual airline reservation as it is altered before the actual flight), but is it useful? Maybe it is!