What we need to focus on is “long data” — information with a “massive historical sweep” that holds “tremendous potential for learning about ourselves,” Samuel Arbesman wrote.

Of course, the crux of Arbesman’s essay isn’t that organizations should warehouse every bit of digital information that comes their way. But according to Pitney Bowes marketing director Benjamin Bruce, businesses can enhance their customer relationships by embracing many of Arbesman’s long data ideas.
“Big data is more about taking a slice in time across many different channels,” Bruce told InformationWeek in a phone interview.

But long data involves looking at information on a much longer timescale. And ignoring customer data and records that go back decades can limit a company’s ability to connect with its customers, he said.

From Big Data, Meet Long Data by Jeff Betolucci in Information Week