Is it useful to install the sample data?

Well you are reading it right now! This depends on what you want to achieve. If you are new to Joomla! and have no clue how it all fits together, just install the sample data. If you don't like the English sample data because you - for instance - speak Chinese, then leave it out.
The GTS underground facilities are also available to interested 3rd parties for underground testing and research. The GTS offers cost-effective access to a fully developed, well characterised underground research facility with round the year logistical support - please contact Dr. Ingo Blechschmidt, Head of the Grimsel Test Site, for further details.
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