09 July 2012
Definition: Analysis of a number of datasets in search of patterns.
Explanation: You can use a collection of datasets and by looking at them all for a particular item or items you can possibly discover information that would not be available by looking at any of the datasets singly. The datasets do not have to be identical in structure. It is possible to use data mining in an exploratory manner.
Example: An early use mining data in search of patterns came from the desire to analyze supermarket transaction data, that is, to examine customer behavior in terms of the purchased products. For example, an association rule "beer => crisps (80%)" states that four out of five customers that bought beer also bought crisps. (Source: Wikipedia.org, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Data_mining )
Why it is important:
It enables us to turn data into information.
Contributed by BES Information Manager Jonathan Walsh