In the old joke, a hot air balloonist descends to ask directions:
Balloonist: “Can you tell me where I am, please?”
Man on ground: “You’re in a balloon about a 100 feet up.”
Balloonist: “Thanks for nothing, counselor.”
The astounded man: “How’d you know I’m a lawyer?!”
Balloonist: “Simple. Your answer was 100 percent accurate and totally useless.”
Ask, “What’s metadata?” and there’s a good chance you’ll hear, “It’s data about data.” Another 100 percent accurate, but useless answer! It’s only marginally better to define metadata as evidence, typically stored electronically, that describes the characteristics, origins, usage and validity of other electronic evidence.
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