Not-So-Mechanical Turk, Part Two: Why Process is Both Invaluable and Inexpensive

January 28, 2013 Evan Liang

Garry Kasparov playing chess against X3D Fritz.
(Image courtesy of Wikipedia via a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike license.)

In our last blog post, we talked about computer-human teamwork, in chess or in other applications.

Garry Kasparov playing chess against X3D Fritz. (Image courtesy of Wikipedia via a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike license.)

Here’s the four-sentence summary:

Computers are great at brute-force computations.

Humans are great at thinking of creative solutions.

Computers and humans working together can beat the best computers or the best humans working independently at a game as complex as chess.

Relatively weak computers and humans working together with a top-notch process can beat stronger computers and stronger humans working together with an inferior process.

Here at LeanData, we think that applies just as much to data cleanup as to chess.

The best part of all of this, especially for cash-strapped businesses in today’s economy?

Strong computers are expensive. Strong human talent is expensive. But process? Process is cheap.

Remember the freestyle chess tournament in 2005? The one where two amateurs beat a few supercomputers and grandmasters?

According to chessbasenews.com, ZackS was a team comprised of Steven Cramton and Zackary Stephen, running a few hundred dollars worth of chess software on a few thousand dollars worth of computers.

Hydra, like IBM’s Deep Blue, on the other hand, almost certainly cost a few million dollars to develop.

In an amusing parallel, IBM has a Master Data Management product available. And when IBM makes products, they pull out all the stops. A user of their program gets an army of consultants and plenty of algorithms to solve their data quality issues.

Oh, and a bill for $10 million.

If you don’t have $10 million dollars and a spare supercomputer at your disposal, what then?

LeanData is all about process, speed, and doing the best work for the least amount of money. Like Cramton and Stephen, we combine less expensive resources in a better way, to deliver better data quality faster and for significantly less money.

Interested in finding out more about why LeanData’s process means faster, cheaper, better data management? Visit the Solutions page.

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