In the Information Age, our world is driven by data. These days, our ability to collect and process data is changing the way we look at and interact with the world. With big data tools widely available, organizations both public and private are using massive amounts of data to improve efficiency, build strategies, and perform research,
The people behind this data revolution are known as data scientists—experts who know how to use data to create real-world solutions and help make sense of our world. Data scientist aren’t just analysts, they’re people who know how to ask the right questions, sort raw data, and communicate their findings to the information can be used. Here are just a few ways they’re shaping our world.
Information is Now Being Presented at a Much Faster Pace Thanks to Data Scientists
The human brain is amazing. It can process and store information in ways we don’t fully understand. But it’s no match for the power of computers, which have the ability to process massive amounts of data in just seconds. If a human were to go through huge datasets manually, they might miss certain patterns and wouldn’t be efficient enough to get through all the data.
Data scientists help us find the answers to pressing questions quickly. While the computer is responsible for actually finding the patterns among huge datasets, it’s the data scientist who knows what types of information to include and exclude, which questions to ask, and what to look for. Data scientists make it possible for companies to get the information they need much more quickly, using raw data.
Tired of the Status Quo? Data Scientists Are on the Way
It’s very easy for individuals, companies, and societies to get into a rut. We often fall into the trap of doing things “the way we’ve always done them” without thinking about the possibility of a better option. It’s not easy to be innovative or to think of creative solutions to social and environmental problems. If you’re tired of the status quo in nearly any context, whether in business or in society, data scientists can probably help.
Data doesn’t lie. Humans use emotional decision-making and often feel overwhelmed when faced with huge problems, like systemic inequality and climate change. Data scientists can help us come up with solutions to the world’s biggest problems using big data and machine learning to identify where changes need to occur.
Those Awesome Netflix Recommendations – A Data Scientist Probably Helps With That
We often don’t even stop to consider all the ways we use data in our modern lives. Many of the conveniences we take for granted these days wouldn’t be possible without the help of a data scientist tweaking their algorithms and figuring out how to improve our experience. A great example of this is the data science behind Netflix recommendations, which uses watch history from the individual user and other customers to personalize content for each profile, making it easy to pick something to watch.
Another example of data science in daily life is less obvious but still impacts our daily habits. Large shipping companies, like UPS, use data to optimize routes for efficiency. This means that packages get delivered more quickly, for a lower cost. If you stop and think about it, there are so many ways our lives are improved by data in subtle ways.
Data Scientists Also Use Prescriptive Analytics to Predict the Future
Data can tell us a lot about what to expect in the future, based on the past. Obviously, it’s not possible to predict the future with 100% certainty, but some data scientists come close with business analytics! Using historical data, data scientists can get a picture of what has happened in the past and how that might affect future events and strategies.
Once they have those predictions, data scientists can use prescriptive analytics to help organizations make business decisions. Prescriptive analytics help to inform long-term strategies and manage risk in all kinds of organizations.
Data is helping us to better understand and improve our world every day. Without data scientists, though, we wouldn’t have the ability to leverage data in ways that make life better for people around the globe. So what’s next? Data scientists may not know, but they probably have some strong predictions.