Do you need a data scientist?

Posted to News  |  Nathan Yau

Cathy O'Neil on when there's enough data to justify a data scientist in the workplace:

Too much to fit on an Excel spreadsheet. And it’s not just how much, it’s really about how high quality the data is; the best is for it to be clean and for it to not be public, or at least not generally used for the purpose that your business uses it for.

Even data that does fit in Excel can be examined more closely. Then again, if you only have that much data, your data scientist will get bored quickly.

[VentureBeat]

1 Comment

  • Andy Holaday November 30, 2011 at 4:30 pm

    I do not disagree with the article but I think it’s worth mentioning Actuaries have been doing this kind of work for decades, albeit in a somewhat specialized industry (insurance). What I like about the message is you do not have to be in the business of insurance to appreciate the need for people with strong skills working with data, who require huge quantities of data, special tools and programming expertise to bring value to an organization. Often, the skills blur lines with traditional IT work. I think sometimes that line is drawn too sharply, which can lead to expectations that IT can fill the “data scientist” roles. In practice I think it is best to separate these areas organizationally, but align them functionally.

Favorites

The Best Data Visualization Projects of 2014

It’s always tough to pick my favorite visualization projects. Nevertheless, I gave it a go.

Think Like a Statistician – Without the Math

I call myself a statistician, because, well, I’m a statistics graduate student. However, the most important things I’ve learned are less formal, but have proven extremely useful when working/playing with data.

Where People Run in Major Cities

There are many exercise apps that allow you to keep track of your running, riding, and other activities. Record speed, …

Life expectancy changes

The data goes back to 1960 and up to the most current estimates for 2009. Each line represents a country.