The number game and data

Its all in the number game or number illusion. You see what you want to see. Unless you deep dive in to the numbers along with context, you can not get correct picture.

It’s all in the number.

What is data and how to interpret?

Number Gane

Why data is important?

Reference point of any data or the context of the data being reported.



Intention of collecting and publishing specific data might be different than what it is used for later on by different people. In today’s context, Covid -19 related data like number of infections, number of deaths, per region/districts/states/country are published. Are we referring these data correctly? Probably not. Each one of us is interpreting it in a different way and drawing our own conclusion. Government is trying to depict something, media is analyses is differently and ultimately citizens understands it differently.

Eg. Death rate country wise figure may be giving incorrect picture unless we add other dimensions, like age factor/lifestyle/profession etc.

More accurate figure may be death rate by country by age-group/by profession( eg medical practitioners) / infants etc



On a similar line, this applies to other fields like software testing results.

Number of bug/defects may not give accurate picture. You need to add context and parameters like bugs related to requirements, UI, coding errors, wrong assumptions and explicit requirement etc as well as time when it was found. A bug found early during development phase vs found in productions/live systems.

Unless we add context and parameters we may be referring the number incorrectly. Its better not to jump into conclusion without deep diving and finding root cause. We generally see what we want to see. IT’s NUMBER ILLUSION  .

If you want to see a good test report, you can project it in the same way using same set of data and vice versa.

Caution : Deep dive into to numbers to get correct picture. Its all in the number. THE NUMBER GAME !!!



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