Source: Technology Review
A job invented in Silicon Valley is going mainstream as more industries try to gain an edge from big data.
WHY IT MATTERS: Communications, computing, and biomedical advances are spurring an explosion of data. How companies use it could determine their own survival.
Data science and personal information are converging to shape the Internet’s most powerful and surprising consumer products.
The job description “data scientist” didn’t exist five years ago. No one advertised for an expert in data science, and you couldn’t go to school to specialize in the field. Today, companies are fighting to recruit these specialists, courses on how to become one are popping up at many universities, and the Harvard Business Review even proclaimed that data scientist is the “sexiest” job of the 21st century.
Data scientists take huge amounts of data and attempt to pull useful information out. The job combines statistics and programming to identify sometimes subtle factors that can have a big impact on a company’s bottom line, from whether a person will click on a certain type of ad to whether a new chemical will be toxic in the human body. Read the rest of this entry »