Now hiring: Data scientists

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data visualisation“Data scientists,” a new species of IT employees, are in high demand. Data scientists are an evolution from the business or data analyst role – while bringing in big business acumen.

By Kamran Saddique

What is a data scientist, you may ask? PayPal and Pivotal, a project management tool provider, recently answered in this question at the Economist’s Information Forum 2013 conference held in San Francisco on June 4, 2013,  in the following way: They have strong programming abilities with statistics at the basic level, as well as strong communication skills needed to articulate findings to a business audience.

Moreover, data scientists should be able to deal with a platform for big data beyond excel files. And let’s not forget that they need to be “domain experts” that ask the right questions before starting a project, leveraging their particular “domain knowledge.”

Do such people even exist today and how are they trained?

Indeed, as it would turn out, they do. As this is being written, Paypal is sourcing data scientists aggressively by working with universities where they join hands with professors by giving them real data (stripping the real word out of data), which can then be mined by graduates and PhD students. This is a sensible strategy as they use this exercise with students as interns and evaluate who can resolve real problems.

PayPal envisions a perfect marriage between industries and institutions in education, as they need people and they want real data for their students to get their hands dirty.

Pivotal also looks meticulously at CVs and tries to determine whether individuals can become data scientists that have a great understanding of mathematics, physics and programming.

To underline that data mining is moving, data scientist programmes have begun being launched at universities. Most notably, New York University’s Stern School of Business now offers courses to find new data scientists that match all requirements.

But they might fall short in one area: Understanding the visualisation of all the data, a challenge that is already being tackled, quickly usurping Microsoft’s PowerPoint.

Read more on the direction zoomable canvas presentation technology is moving in Inside Investor’s interview with the CEO of Prezi.  

 

 

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Reading Time: 2 minutes

“Data scientists,” a new species of IT employees, are in high demand. Data scientists are an evolution from the business or data analyst role – while bringing in big business acumen.

Reading Time: 2 minutes

data visualisation“Data scientists,” a new species of IT employees, are in high demand. Data scientists are an evolution from the business or data analyst role – while bringing in big business acumen.

By Kamran Saddique

What is a data scientist, you may ask? PayPal and Pivotal, a project management tool provider, recently answered in this question at the Economist’s Information Forum 2013 conference held in San Francisco on June 4, 2013,  in the following way: They have strong programming abilities with statistics at the basic level, as well as strong communication skills needed to articulate findings to a business audience.

Moreover, data scientists should be able to deal with a platform for big data beyond excel files. And let’s not forget that they need to be “domain experts” that ask the right questions before starting a project, leveraging their particular “domain knowledge.”

Do such people even exist today and how are they trained?

Indeed, as it would turn out, they do. As this is being written, Paypal is sourcing data scientists aggressively by working with universities where they join hands with professors by giving them real data (stripping the real word out of data), which can then be mined by graduates and PhD students. This is a sensible strategy as they use this exercise with students as interns and evaluate who can resolve real problems.

PayPal envisions a perfect marriage between industries and institutions in education, as they need people and they want real data for their students to get their hands dirty.

Pivotal also looks meticulously at CVs and tries to determine whether individuals can become data scientists that have a great understanding of mathematics, physics and programming.

To underline that data mining is moving, data scientist programmes have begun being launched at universities. Most notably, New York University’s Stern School of Business now offers courses to find new data scientists that match all requirements.

But they might fall short in one area: Understanding the visualisation of all the data, a challenge that is already being tackled, quickly usurping Microsoft’s PowerPoint.

Read more on the direction zoomable canvas presentation technology is moving in Inside Investor’s interview with the CEO of Prezi.  

 

 

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