Jasleen Kaur

September, 2015

I see a lot of questions these days that revolve around why “Big data” is important. There are questions that ask reasons to as to why one should take up a career as a data scientist. There are blogs that will tell you in simple steps as to how one can become a data scientist, infographics that make the whole affair look really amazing and attractive.

Well, there is nothing wrong with it. The word Big Data is attractive and I have completely fallen in love with it. Every day that I see data, I wonder and day dream of what I can do with it, if I know how to play with it and if I have a great sense of creativity.

I wonder how some random numbers, letters and even images combine to become ‘the Big data’ that the world is so zealously talking about. Once you have the data, imagination is your limit. My boss is an amazing data scientist and if he collects data on daily observations that he makes of me, there is a 99% chance that he would correctly predict when I might perform and when I might not. I will know what to wear for office everyday instead of spending the priceless 15 mins in front of the cupboard over-filled with clothes, if I perform a ‘Sentiment Analysis’ given the data on daily observations.

Data tells the Government where the poor are, it clearly points at what targets to be achieved and half the battle is won when you know what the problem is. Data can help you eradicate deadly diseases, help you with the most critical of your findings. It can help you accept your hypothesis that there is a ‘Pluto’ and be happy with it and at the same time disappoint you when it would reject the hypothesis that a ‘Pluto’ ever existed! Data can make wonders happen. It can predict behaviors, it can predict weather, it can predict who will be the next President, it can predict when will Earth no more exist, it can answer why you failed in each exam while the last bencher always stood first – it can answer difficult questions when modeled and make a simple thing look very beautiful and attractive when visualized with the right tools.

There is a lot more to data than what my small sized brain can even think of. And that is the best part. It is an exciting hobby for me these days to explore the intricacies of that random number or image that will make a difference. It thrills me to realize the do-ability of data when I learn a new aspect of how to manipulate it. I love playing with data and if you want to play with it too, go ahead become a data scientist.

Well, I just answered the most cited question, “Why to become a data scientist?”