Are you a Data Scientist?

  • Eric M Russell (9/29/2015)


    To be a true Data Scientist, you probably need a solid academic background in data analysis as well as deep knowledge of whatever domain you're working in. I'd also expect that person to work almost exclusively in the arena of data analysis. It's not just a programmer who has read a couple of O'Reilly books on the topic.

    I like your definition. It makes sense.

  • I've been calling myself a computer programmer for over 40 years. I didn't know I wasn't supposed to use that term anymore or that it had some sort of "bad" connotation.

  • ccd3000 (9/29/2015)


    Well, I.T. hijacked and cheapened the 'Engineer' moniker a long time ago so why not 'Scientist'?

    Indeed we have.

    That's why I've typically called myself the data janitor.

  • When people ask what I do I say I either work in IT or I am a programmer. Everyone seems to understand programmer and very few people understand anything else.

    Also I like Alan's definition for Data Scientist.

  • Steve Jones - SSC Editor (9/30/2015)


    ccd3000 (9/29/2015)


    Well, I.T. hijacked and cheapened the 'Engineer' moniker a long time ago so why not 'Scientist'?

    Indeed we have.

    That's why I've typically called myself the data janitor.

    Well, nowadays janitors are referring to themselves as [sanitation engineers]. A data sanitation engineer sounds like the name of an actual role on an ETL team. 🙂

    "Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise. Instead, seek what they sought." - Matsuo Basho

  • I simply tell family and friends that I work in Information Technology and then tell them what the company does. I don't provide more detail about my role, unless they seem genuinely interested and ask me follow up questions. Really, my actual role can vary depending on what hat I'm wearing.

    "Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise. Instead, seek what they sought." - Matsuo Basho

  • Eric M Russell (10/1/2015)


    I simply tell family and friends that I work in Information Technology and then tell them what the company does. I don't provide more detail about my role, unless they seem genuinely interested and ask me follow up questions. Really, my actual role can vary depending on what hat I'm wearing.

    Whenever I try to describe what I do, I just get the "deer in the headlights" expression. As a result, I just tell people that I design healthcare computer systems. While far from an accurate description it seems to be enough. It's not too often that I can really describe it outside of SQL Saturday!

  • I do usually tell people in Scouts or kids sports that I'm a computer guy. If they know something and want to ask more, I will talk about databases.

  • Steve Jones - SSC Editor (10/1/2015)


    I do usually tell people in Scouts or kids sports that I'm a computer guy. If they know something and want to ask more, I will talk about databases.

    Depending on the crowd, if you want to sound more sophisticated, you can tell them you're an internationally renowned author, magazine editor, lecturer, and entrepreneur. 🙂

    "Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the wise. Instead, seek what they sought." - Matsuo Basho

  • My self appointed title is

    DATA THERAPIST

    It allows me to spark some interest in the greater organization, giving me a chance to promote my ability to generate visual answers, make sense out of the noise, and do it quicker than any other method. Massaging the data, coaxing out the details....

    No doubt that we need to stay on our game, however!

    sure, my title still says DBA 🙂

  • I just say IT or software developer or engineer.

    But, I think as big as data is becoming, just saying I work with databases also seem to be understood too.

  • John Hanrahan (9/30/2015)


    When people ask what I do I say I either work in IT or I am a programmer. Everyone seems to understand programmer and very few people understand anything else.

    I usually used to tell people "I mess about with computers" or "I play with computers". But when asked by an academic I either said "I'm a computer scientist" (and that often got the answer, "Oh, I play with computers too") or said "I'm a software engineer" (depending on what sort of academic it was).

    Tom

  • ccd3000 (9/29/2015)


    Well, I.T. hijacked and cheapened the 'Engineer' moniker a long time ago so why not 'Scientist'? Most of the I.T. "Engineers" I've worked in the past are no more engineers than I'm an astronaut. I've actually worked alongside real engineers in the nuclear energy field and they have this affection for methodology that is far too rarely seen anymore in I.T. and I doubt the newly minted "scientists" will raise the bar much.

    The professional discipline and codes on conduct that real engineers have are applicable to software engineers too. I agree that the term "Engineer" has to some extent been hijacked by the IT industry and it's a great pity that many people call themselves "engineer" who have no engineering qualification at all and wouldn't recognise a formal code of conduct if it got up and bit them.

    But I have worked with many software engineers who were genuine engineers, and I do myself have the formal qualifications of a professional engineer (both European and British qualification) as well as those of a professional mathematician, and I do have codes of conduct to abide by. I have also worked in environments where only a tiny proportion of the people had any concept of engineering or had any interest in the soundness or otherwise of their methodologies, yet eveyone claimed to be a software engineer.

    But I've found the same sort of thing in other fields of engineering, it's not just IT that's hijacked the term. Even in things like traffic and road safety the term is misused - I had some disagreement once with the "chief traffic engineer" of a local government because he though that traffic flows could reasonably have nodes where the total flow out was different from the total flow in (ie the network had sources and sinks for vehicles), and another disagreement with someone claiming to be an electronics engineer (working in telecomms) who claimed that the signally capacity of a channel in bits/sec was inherently less than twice its bandwidth in cycles/second (based, I think, on a gross misunderstanding of the Nyquist-Shannon sampling theorem, unless of course he thought that the measure of amplitude has only two possible values or perhaps that all channels have a signal to noise power ratio of 3).

    Tom

  • Eric M Russell (10/1/2015)


    Steve Jones - SSC Editor (9/30/2015)


    ccd3000 (9/29/2015)


    Well, I.T. hijacked and cheapened the 'Engineer' moniker a long time ago so why not 'Scientist'?

    Indeed we have.

    That's why I've typically called myself the data janitor.

    Well, nowadays janitors are referring to themselves as [sanitation engineers]. A data sanitation engineer sounds like the name of an actual role on an ETL team. 🙂

    Pretty sure that company that was hosting Hillary's email server hired several "data sanitation engineers" a few years back :hehe:

    As an integration architect I've often referred to myself as a data plumber (I unclog data problems stuck between systems)

    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Your lack of planning does not constitute an emergency on my part...unless you're my manager...or a director and above...or a really loud-spoken end-user..All right - what was my emergency again?

  • Aaron N. Cutshall (9/29/2015)


    ...We shouldn't be like Maslov's dogs...

    I think you mean Pavlov (as Maslow is the triangle guy) but I get your point!!!

    Gaz

    -- Stop your grinnin' and drop your linen...they're everywhere!!!

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