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Structured versus unstructured data

The majority of structured data is developed on the Web.

Structured data can be generated by hand in the form of notes or contents from filing cabinets, but will invariably be stored electronically into spreadsheets and databases. For the most part, structured data refers to information with a high degree of organization, such that inclusion in a relational database is seamless and readily searchable by simple, straightforward search engine algorithms or other search operations.

Unstructured data, which includes photos, videos, tweets, and word processing documents, is much harder to categorise. However, it contains a wealth of key data.

The lack of structure makes compilation and analysis time-consuming, but the task can be done through the identification of features, tags and metatags.

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