One of the hottest topics in tech right now is our focus for today: the present and the future of data science.
On this episode of CTO Studio, you’ll hear data science downloads from Christopher Keown who runs a local machine learning data science meetup in San Diego. You’ll also hear insights from Robert Swisher, who is the CTO of biproxi and Alex Balazs, the chief architect at Intuit.
We specifically discuss when you should be adding data scientists to your team, how the role of engineering in the data science environment of today, and why data science is actually very personal and very local. Join us for those discussions on episode 61 of CTO Studio!
In this episode, you’ll hear:
- What are black box models? (8:40)
- Where is the disconnect happening in data science right now? (16:05)
- When should you as a CTO be hiring a data scientist? (29:55)
- How much data do you need before you can develop predictions with machine learning? (38:35)
- Have we tapped into the true potential of data science yet? (47:45)
- And so much more!
We jump straight into Chris’ meetup groups: he started the San Diego Machine Learning group in 2017 as he was finishing up graduate school. He didn’t want to go into a career in data science, but he did want to be involved in the field.
Because so much is happening within San Diego he thought he could bring people in from the community and they could work on data science together. The group was also created for people new to data science, it is a place where they can get some experience from people with more knowledge. And for the more seasoned veterans, the group is a place where they can hone their skills.
When I asked Christopher to tell us what data science is he defines it from the data scientist perspective, which means it is about getting insight from your data. It’s about the story the data is telling. And what story you are pursuing is driven by your business objectives.
For example, if it’s about understanding your customer better and understand their behavior better or increase profits, data science can tell you about each of those objectives.
Next we transition into talking about Robert’s company, biproxi. biproxi is an end to end transaction platform for commercial real estate. They provide tools for the middle market commercial real estate broker, and help those brokers run professional transactions online like the big firms. They have also just started releasing Zillow-type data for 32 million commercial real estate assets in the U.S., and they are the only company to do this.
Alex asks Chris about his machine learning group: what is the makeup of his attendees? He is asking within a certain context. When he started at Intuit 20 years ago there were make-file engineers – that was the only job was to make files. Now we use the term full stack engineer and that includes front end, back end, dev ops, owning your own quality, and more frequently data and data science are being included in this term. So the role of the engineer is really transforming in this era of data science as data science becomes more and more real.