Your dishwasher hates you.
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Oh, all right, I'll elaborate.Look. We don't use the word "data" like a plural anymore. At best it is plural in the sense that "sand" is plural: a large contiguous mass of material, any piece of which is almost infinitely divisible. In other words, it has become a mass noun in the common usage, and very sensibly so.Nobody uses "datum". Very few people who have data could actually tell you what one "datum" of it is. I collect reams of data, and I have no idea what a "datum" would be: a single sensor record? An element in that sensor record? If I break down one sensor record into individual parts, most of them make no sense on their own - but some of them do. If I break any of them down into bits, those bits lose their meaning instantly: they are no longer data, they are noise... unless it's a field of flags, in which case it's still data. It doesn't break down cleanly, you see? It's like "chickens": when you start dealing with giblets and thighs and hooves and whatever, you're not talking about "chickens" anymore, you're talking about "chicken".So please, let's be grown-ups about this.(This rant has been brought to you by: The Economist Magazine, an excellent publication with sometimes inscrutable editorial standards)
All right, all right: I mean the English word "data". I will concede that, in Latin, "data" is plural.