SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

Although the misuse of “data” is a more serious problem than the misuse of the word itself, one can certainly argue that the two are related. The problem is, however, more complicated than implied in Neugebauer's letter, because there are different levels of “observational” data. For example, in paleoclimatology it is common to refer to “proxy” data, which are observations of one variable that have a high probability of being indicative of another. Such data are indirect “observations.” Take satellite data as another example. Many “indices” are derived from satellite “data,” including temperature, vegetation, etc., and image classification techniques allow patterns in “data” to be recognized as signatures of various environmental features. Are these derived products “data”?