War Games and Sunday Morning Analytics

I woke up this morning and happened to catch the movie "War Games" and realized two things.  First I must move to Seattle in order to hack into the WOPR to play these war games, second there is no way that hot girl would ever like a nerd like Matthew Broderick, third it's crazy how far technology has come since the dial up Modem, and finally we can't always let data and machines make our decisions for us

I remember watching this movie as a much younger man without any sort of real context of the powers of technology I just knew it was cool that he hacked into the governments crazy large computer.  Watching that movie this morning made me realize that this movie was about the resistance of the old guard in implementing new technologies, countered by the arrogance of techies with a misplaced trust in everything machine at the expense of human judgement. 

Having grown up in more of a tech heavy enviornment with computers, nintendos and email, it's easy to forget that there is more to making decisions and solving problems than what machines and data may tell us.  Many times it's important to listen to the voice of a human along with a pile of data, as the human persepctive may give us a different insight than a large aggregated set of data. 

Listening can often offer us the correct persepctive, rather than just a dry data driven one.  It worked to avert World War 3 in war games, and got Mathew Broderick the girl..so the same could probably be true in web analytics and web marketing as well.  There is always more to the story than just the data.  It's important to test, listen, test again, and openly discuss issues and decisions, never relying just on the "WOPR" to drive decision making.