Doing good data science

Jul 11, 2018

Mike Loukides, Hilary Mason, and DJ Patil published a first post in a series on data ethics on O’Reilly.

We particularly need to think about the unintended consequences of our use of data. It will never be possible to predict all the unintended consequences; we’re only human, and our ability to foresee the future is limited. But plenty of unintended consequences could easily have been foreseen: for example, Facebook’s “Year in Review” that reminded people of deaths and other painful events. Moving fast and breaking things is unacceptable if we don’t think about the things we are likely to break. And we need the space to do that thinking: space in project schedules, and space to tell management that a product needs to be rethought.

Because data might just be computer output — cold and mechanical — but what data represents and the things it leads to are not.

Favorites

Divorce and Occupation

Some jobs tend towards higher divorce rates. Some towards lower. Salary also probably plays a role.

Marrying Age

People get married at various ages, but there are definite trends that vary across demographic groups. What do these trends look like?

Best Data Visualization Projects of 2016

Here are my favorites for the year.

Watching the growth of Walmart – now with 100% more Sam’s Club

The ever so popular Walmart growth map gets an update, and yes, it still looks like a wildfire. Sam’s Club follows soon after, although not nearly as vigorously.