Charting the Course: Envisioning a New Era of Data Utilization

Adam Mico
3 min readJun 28, 2023

A Personal Reflection at 48: Steering Towards a Future Where Data Is Truly Understood, Appreciated, and Optimally Utilized

Credit: Midjourney AI (my prompt)

Today, as I embrace another journey around the sun, turning 48, I ruminate about the future of data and how my favorite tools will continue to shape this fascinating landscape. We're in an era where data is the backbone of our decision-making processes, and it's exhilarating to imagine where we're headed.

Our world is awash with data, and there's a dazzling array of tools at our fingertips to consume it. Yet, when we dive into the subject, one crucial component seems to get overshadowed — the focus on cleanliness, governance, cataloging, and data scalability.

As companies grow, data becomes the essential fuel that powers their development. It is integrated into AI systems, enabling them to learn and progress. However, the present condition of this data often resembles a painter's palette - filled with redundancy, clutter, and errors. Through my daily interactions with data, I have observed these issues arise more frequently than one might imagine, manifesting themselves subtly (and sometimes not so subtly) in dashboard details and during basic data navigation.

Many people have concerns about the impact of AI, which are only magnified as the technology advances rapidly. One major issue is the tendency to mindlessly accept AI-generated results without questioning the data quality used to train the system. This can be extremely dangerous, particularly if these insights are consumed by stakeholders who need more knowledge or resources to delve deeper into the underlying data. It's like navigating a ship through murky waters without clearly understanding the risks involved.

Despite these challenges, I can't help but feel optimistic. We're not just identifying the problems; we're also crafting solutions. And I see my favorite tools, like Tableau, playing a crucial part.

Imagine a Tableau that doesn't just let us choose from an array of visualizations and guides us based on its understanding of our data. Think of something like 'Tableau Pulse,' offering sharp, valuable insights at a glance and providing recommendations tailored to our data's unique characteristics.

Even at 48, I am ignited with a relentless passion for the future's immense potential. With an unyielding conviction, we have the power to engineer an efficient, adaptable, and high-value data ecosystem.

Let's not just trail along the path; instead, let's blaze the trail ourselves. Let's spearhead the movement towards a future where data is not merely consumed — it's meticulously understood, genuinely appreciated, and wholly utilized to its full potential.

The journey begins now — there is no room for delay. It's time we galvanize our efforts, and the rewards will be invaluable: a future that's not only informed but also shaped by data. Let's forge ahead and script a future that celebrates a data-centric worldview fully equipped with the power of knowledge and insights.

Adam Mico

Twitter | LinkedIn | Tableau Public

Note: My book, "Tableau Desktop Specialist Certification," is available for order here.



Adam Mico

Data Visualization and Enablement Leader | Data Leadership Collaborative Advisory Board Member | Tableau Visionary + Ambassador | Views are my own