Data Science, Article, Blog

What Data Science Isn’t



October 29, 2019


Remember the Ginsu 2000 commercials in the ‘90s? By the end of the commercial you were convinced that you couldn’t live without such a powerful cutting utensil. “But wait there’s more…!”

We’re susceptible to buzzwords and trends in the consumer market, but the business market is no exception. Remember the craze of Big Data? The buzz was so nutty that it drove Dan Ariely from Duke University to state, “Big data is like teenage sex: everyone talks about it, nobody really knows how to do it, everyone thinks everyone else is doing it, so everyone claims they are doing it...”

Data Science is that buzzword today. Nobody wants to admit that they’re not doing Data Science, lest they admit that they’re “behind the times.” But herein lies the problem: in an effort to push their organization into Data Science, Business Stakeholders are ignoring the actual needs the organization has to consume data. So rather than using the tools they already have to address the problem sitting right in front of them, they jump the shark assuming better results will follow.

One example that comes to mind is an organization that we visited in Spring of 2019 in Manhattan. They were very excited to show us their Data Science project which they had rolled out. Mind you this was a mature organization which had multiple data integration and BI deployments in the past. The Business Stakeholders had caught the Data Science bug and decided to build a new team in the organization that could help deploy a new program.

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