Humming Bird Project

A recently released movie titled “The Hummingbird Project” starring Salma Hayek takes the idea of perishable data to the extreme. The basic premise is that two stock traders devise a plan to run a perfectly straight fiber optic line from New Jersey to Kansas spending hundreds of millions of dollars to complete. The payoff, stock data in 16 milliseconds, which would be one millisecond faster than all other traders. $400 million investment for 1 millisecond. As Green and Black belts we are trained in data and metrics. A key point about data and data analysis is, we collect data to make decisions and take action, not for the sheer fun of data analysis. A second point about data is how it is perishable – meaning it is only useful for a set amount of time. Some data is valid for hours, weeks, and even years. In the case of the stock market, data is only valid for seconds, and in the Hummingbird Project – milliseconds. What data do you use to make decisions? Is it fresh and relevant or old and misleading? So if Salma Hayek isn’t enough for you to watch, maybe this extreme example of the perish-ability of data will. You had me at perishable data, Erik