I believe that information technology as a whole is becoming more mature, complex, and varied in its substance and use as economies shift towards a more knowledge, or information, based economy. This will place technology, and information, at the center of a lot of economic activity.
On top of this, I believe that machine learning and artificial intelligence have the implicit assumption, and frankly require, that data is stored in a way that is useful and meaningful. This is almost never the case.
Given these things, it is important to place data near the center of discussion so that we can focus on how to leverage the data we have, refining that into useful knowledge, and then solving real-world problems for people using this knowledge through products & services.
In short, I am a fan and it sounds reasonable to me.