The importance of being Data Scientist

Header-Image by Clint Adair on Unsplash.

The incredible results of Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence, Deep Learning in particular, could give the impression that Data Scientist are like magician. Just think of it. Recognising faces of people, translating from one language to another, diagnosing diseases from images, computing which product should be shown for us next to buy and so on from numbers only. Numbers which existed for centuries. What a perfect illusion. But it is only an illusion, as Data Scientist existed as well for centuries. However, there is a difference between the one from today compared to the one from the past: evolution.

The main activity of Data Scientist is to work with information also called data. Records of data are as old as mankind, but only within the 16 century did it include also numeric forms — as numbers started to gain more and more ground developing their own symbols. Numerical data, from a given phenomenon — being an experiment or the counts of sheep sold by week over the year –, was from early on saved in tabular form. Such a way to record data is interlinked with the supposition that information can be extracted from it, that knowledge — in form of functions — is hidden and awaits to be discovered. Collecting data and determining the function best fitting them let scientist to new insight into the law of nature right away: Galileo’s velocity law, Kepler’s planetary law, Newton theory of gravity etc.

Such incredible results where not possible without the data. In the past, one was able to collect data only as a scientist, an academic. In many instances, one needed to perform the experiment by himself. Gathering data was tiresome and very time consuming. No sensor which automatically measures the temperature or humidity, no computer on which all the data are written with the corresponding time stamp and are immediately available to be analysed. No, everything was performed manually: from the collection of the data to the tiresome computation.

More then that. Just think of Michael Faraday and Hermann Hertz and there experiments. Such endeavour where what we will call today an one-man-show. Both of them developed parts of the needed physics and tools, detailed the needed experiment settings, conducting the experiment and collect the data and, finally, computing the results. The same is true for many other experiments of their time. In biology Charles Darwin makes its case regarding evolution from the data collected in his expeditions on board of the Beagle over a period of 5 years, or Gregor Mendel which carry out a study of pea regarding the inherence of traits. In physics Blaise Pascal used the barometer to determine the atmospheric pressure or in chemistry Antoine Lavoisier discovers from many reaction in closed container that the total mass does not change over time. In that age, one person was enough to perform everything and was the reason why the last part, of a data scientist, could not be thought of without the rest. It was inseparable from the rest of the phenomenon.

With the advance of technology, theory and experimental tools was a specialisation gradually inescapable. As the experiments grow more and more complex, the background and condition in which the experiments were performed grow more and more complex. Newton managed to make first observation on light with a simple prism, but observing the line and bands from the light of the sun more than a century and half later by Joseph von Fraunhofer was a different matter. The small improvements over the centuries culminated in experiments like CERN or the Human Genome Project which would be impossible to be carried out by one person alone. Not only was it necessary to assign a different person with special skills for a separate task or subtask, but entire teams. CERN employs today around 17 500 people. Only in such a line of specialisation can one concentrate only on one task alone. Thus, some will have just the knowledge about the theory, some just of the tools of the experiment, other just how to collect the data and, again, some other just how to analyse best the recorded data.

If there is a specialisation regarding every part of the experiment, what makes Data Scientist so special? It is impossible to validate a theory, deciding which market strategy is best without the work of the Data Scientist. It is the reason why one starts today recording data in the first place. Not only the size of the experiment has grown in the past centuries, but also the size of the data. Gauss manage to determine the orbit of Ceres with less than 20 measurements, whereas the new picture about the black hole took 5 petabytes of recorded data. To put this in perspective, 1.5 petabytes corresponds to 33 billion photos or 66.5 years of HD-TV videos. If one includes also the time to eat and sleep, than 5 petabytes would be enough for a life time.

For Faraday and Hertz, and all the other scientist of their time, the goal was to find some relationship in the scarce data they painstakingly recorded. Due to time limitations, no special skills could be developed regarding only the part of analysing data. Not only are Data Scientist better equipped as the scientist of the past in analysing data, but they managed to develop new methods like Deep Learning, which have no mathematical foundation yet in spate of their success. Data Scientist developed over the centuries to the seldom branch of science which bring together what the scientific specialisation was forced to split.

What was impossible to conceive in the 19 century, became more and more a reality at the end of the 20 century and developed to a stand alone discipline at the beginning of the 21 century. Such a development is not only natural, but also the ground for the development of A.I. in general. The mathematical tools needed for such an endeavour where already developed by the half of the 20 century in the period when computing power was scars. Although the mathematical methods were present for everyone, to understand them and learn how to apply them developed quite differently within every individual field in which Machine Learning/A.I. was applied. The way the same method would be applied by a physicist, a chemist, a biologist or an economist would differ so radical, that different words emerged which lead to different langues for similar algorithms. Even today, when Data Science has became a independent branch, two different Data Scientists from different application background could find it difficult to understand each other only from a language point of view. The moment they look at the methods and code the differences will slowly melt away.

Finding a universal language for Data Science is one of the next important steps in the development of A.I. Then it would be possible for a Data Scientist to successfully finish a project in industry, turn to a new one in physics, then biology and returning to industry without much need to learn special new languages in order to be able to perform each tasks. It would be possible to concentrate on that what a Data Scientist does best: find the best algorithm. In other words, a Data Scientist could resolve problems independent of the background the problem was stated.

This is the most important aspect that distinguish the Data Scientist. A mathematician is limited to solve problems in mathematics alone, a physicist is able to solve problems only in physics, a biologist problems only in biology. With a unique language regarding the methods and strategies to solve Machine Learning/A.I. problems, a Data Scientist can solve a problem independent of the field. Specialisation put different branches of science at drift from each other, but it is the evolution of the role of the Data Scientist to synthesize from all of them and find the quintessence in a language which transpire beyond all the field of science. The emerging language of Data Science is a new building block, a new mathematical language of nature.

Although such a perspective does not yet exists, the principal component of Machine Learning/A.I. already have such proprieties partially in form of data. Because predicting for example the numbers of eggs sold by a company or the numbers of patients which developed immune bacteria to a specific antibiotic in all hospital in a country can be performed by the same prediction method. The data do not carry any information about the entities which are being predicted. It does not matter anymore if the data are from Faraday’s experiment, CERN of Human Genome. The same data set and its corresponding prediction could stand literary for anything. Thus, the result of the prediction — what we would call for a human being intuition and/or estimation — would be independent of the domain, the area of knowledge it originated.

It also lies at the very heart of A.I., the dream of researcher to create self acting entities, that is machines with consciousness. This implies that the algorithms must be able to determine which task, model is relevant at a given moment. It would be to cumbersome to have a model for every task and and every field and then try to connect them all in one. The independence of scientific language, like of data, is thus a mandatory step. It also means that developing A.I. is not only connected to develop a new consciousness, but, and most important, to the development of our one.

Essential Tips To Know In Order To Get Hired As A Data Scientist

In today’s day and age, information is a significant asset of any company. Thanks to technology, companies receive loads of data on a daily basis. It takes time and skill to filter out and sift through all the information in order to determine which areas are useful for the company. This is where your job as a data scientist, also referred to as a data analyst, comes in.

If you’ve long been wanting to work as a data scientist, here are some tips you can follow:

  1. Know What A Data Scientist Really Does

When you wish to be hired as a data scientist, you have to know what the job entails. More than just the job title, you also have to be aware of the day-to-day operations in the workplace. Because data is overflowing, it’s the job of a data scientist to analyze data and use their technical skills to solve problems relating to the data presented. When there aren’t any problems found, they also strive to find possible problems.

As a data scientist, you get to enjoy numerous specializations in your job. Xcede data scientist jobs, for instance, have other responsibilities that can include working as a mathematician, and even as statistics and economics experts. To be hired as a data scientist, you must first be familiar with the ins and outs of the job.

  1. Know The Basic Qualifications

Before you even apply for entry-level data scientist jobs, you also have to be aware of its basic qualifications. If you’ve completed a bachelor’s degree or even a master’s degree in data science or data analysis, then you’re a likely candidate for the job.

But if you don’t have this degree, don’t be dismayed. There are still related courses that can land you the job. Some of these include having a background in Mathematics, Economics, Finance, and Statistics.

Additional basic academic qualifications that you need in order to be hired as a data scientist include:

  • Bachelor’s degree in any of the related fields as mentioned above
  • Master’s degree in any of the fields related to data, mathematics, statistics, and economics
  • At least one to two years of experience in a related field before fully applying as a data scientist
  1. Obtain Further Studies And Experience

While information is an asset that’s highly in-demand today, it doesn’t mean that you’re going to land a job right after your first interview. Especially if you’re a fresh graduate, it’s highly advised that you work in a job that’s related to the course you’ve just finished. In most cases, prior experience is needed before you can get a job in data science. For instance, if you’ve graduated from a Mathematics course, work in this field first.

A critical piece of advice you should remember is that the data science industry is a highly competitive one. While you can successfully find entry-level data science jobs, others might be looking for additional qualifications. In this case, grab the opportunity to further your knowledge and studies, whether that’s getting additional certifications, continuing your education to obtain a higher degree, or familiarizing yourself with the different software and skills needed for the job. Moreover, make it a point to attend training programs as well as seminars relating to data science. Doing this will increase your chances of getting hired.

  1. Know The Basic Skills Needed

More than just your educational attainment, employers are also looking for this basic set of skills:

  • Mathematical Capabilities: As a data scientist, you will be facing a lot of data and statistics, but not all of them will be relevant. In their raw form, it’s up to you to process and study the data deeper so these statistics can be arranged and translated into useful information.
  • Data Management and Manipulation: This means having basic knowledge on data management software in order to keep up with the times, as well as analyze, arrange, and interpret data in a more efficient and timely manner.
  • Programming: This is an integral part of data science. Hence, you must also possess the basic skills involving primary programming languages, such as Java and C++. This is necessary since data analysis tools that require knowledge in computer science and programming will be used to analyze and process the data that you’re presented with. This is where your expertise in programming can come in handy.

Possessing these skills can give you an edge over other applicants, especially if you’re familiar with the software a particular company is using.

Conclusion

Applying as a data scientist or data analyst is not entirely different from when you’re applying to other jobs. It may sound more technical, but the principles are still the same: you need to first understand your job description, responsibilities, and the basic skills and qualifications needed in order to be efficient in the workplace. You can also increase your chances of getting hired by enhancing your credentials and certifications through further studies. Take a masters’ degree, if necessary. These tips, along with patience and determination, can help kickstart your career as a data scientist.

Accelerate your AI Skills Today: A Million Dollar Job!

The skyrocketing salaries ($1m per year) of AI engineers is not a hype. It is the fact of current corporate world, where you will witness a shift that is inevitable.

We’ve already set our feet at the edge of the technological revolution. A revolution that is at the verge of altering the way we live and work. As the fact suggests, humanity has fundamentally developed human production in three revolutions, and we’re now entering the fourth revolution. In its scope, the fourth revolution projects a transformation that is unlike anything we humans have ever experienced.

  • The first revolution had the world transformed from rural to urban
  • the emergence of mass production in the second revolution
  • third introduced the digital revolution
  • The fourth industrial revolution is anxious to integrate technologies into our lives.

And all thanks to artificial intelligence (AI). An advanced technology that surrounds us, from virtual assistants to software that translates to self-driving cars.

The rise of AI at an exponential rate has disrupted almost every industry. So much so that AI is being rated as one-million-dollar profession.

Did this grab your attention? It did?

Now, what if we were to tell you that the salary compensation for AI experts has grown dramatically. AI and machine learning are fields that have a mountain of demand in the tech industry today but has sparse supply.

AI field is growing at a quicker pace and salaries are skyrocketing! Read it for yourself to know what AI experts, AI researchers and any other AI talent are commanding today.

  • A top-class AI research laboratory, OpenAI says that techies in the AI field are projected to earn a salary compensation ranging between $300 to $500k for fresh graduates. However, expert professionals could earn anywhere up to $1m.
  • Whopping salary package of above 100 million yen that amounts to $1m is being offered to AI geniuses by a Japanese firm, Start Today. A firm that operates a fashion shopping website named Zozotown.

Does this leave you with a question – Is this a right opportunity for you to jump in the field and make hay while the sun is shining? 

And the answer to this question is – yes, it is the right opportunity for any developer seeking a role in the AI industry. It can be your chance to bridge the skill shortage in the AI field either by upskilling or reskilling yourself in the field of AI.

There are a wide varieties of roles available for an AI enthusiast like you. And certain areas are like AI Engineers and AI Researchers are high in demand, as there are not many professionals who have robust AI knowledge.

According to a job report, “The Future of Jobs 2018,” a prediction was made suggesting that machines and algorithms will create around 133 million new job roles by 2022.

AI and machine learning will dominate the tech world. The World Economic Forum says that several sectors have started embracing AI and machine learning to tackle challenges in certain fields such as advertising, supply chain, manufacturing, smart cities, drones, and cybersecurity.

Unraveling the AI realm

From chatbots to financial planners, AI is impacting the way businesses function on a day-today basis. AI makes the work simpler, as it provides variables, which makes the work more streamlined.

Alright! You know that

  • the demand for AI professionals is rising exponentially and that there is just a trickle of supply
  • the AI professionals are demanding skyrocketing salaries

However, beyond that how much more do you know about AI?

Considering the fact that our lives have already been touched by AI (think Alexa, and Siri), it is just a matter of time when AI will become an indispensable part of our lives.

As Gartner predicts that 2020 will be an important year for business growth in AI. Thus, it is possible to witness significant sparks for employment growth. Though AI predicts to diminish 1.8 million jobs, it is also said to replace it with 2.3 million jobs that will be created. As we look forward to stepping into 2020, AI-related job roles are set to make positive progress of achieving 2 million net-new employments by 2025.

With AI promising to score fat paychecks that would reach millions, AI experts are struggling to find new ways to pick up nouveau skills. However, one of the biggest impacts that affect the job market today is the scarcity of talent in this field.

The best way to stay relevant and employable in AI is probably by “reskilling,” and “upskilling.” And  AI certifications is considered ideal for those in the current workforce.

Looking to upskill yourself – here’s how you can become an AI engineer today.

Top three ways to enhance your artificial intelligence career:

  1. Acquire skills in Statistics and Machine Learning: If you’re getting into the field of machine learning, it is crucial that you have in-depth knowledge of statistics. Statistics is considered a prerequisite to the ML field. Both the fields are tightly related. Machine learning models are created to make accurate predictions while statistical models do the job of interpreting the relationship between variables. Many ML techniques heavily rely on the theory obtained through statistics. Thus, having extensive knowledge in statistics help initiate the first step towards an AI career.
  2. Online certification programs in AI skills: Opting for AI certifications will boost your credibility amongst potential employers. Certifications will also enhance your earning potential and increase your marketability. If you’re looking for a change and to be a part of something impactful; join the AI bandwagon. The IT industry is growing at breakneck speed; it is now that businesses are realizing how important it is to hire professionals with certain skillsets. Specifically, those who are certified in AI are becoming sought after in the job market.
  3. Hands-on experience: There’s a vast difference in theory and practical knowledge. One needs to familiarize themselves with the latest tools and technologies used by the industry. This is possible only if the individual is willing to work on projects and build things from scratch.

Despite all the promises, AI does prove to be a threat to job holders, if they don’t upskill or reskill themselves. The upcoming AI revolution will definitely disrupt the way we work, however, it will leave room for humans to perform more creative jobs in the future corporate world.

So a word of advice is to be prepared and stay future ready.

The Data Scientist Job and the Future

A dramatic upswing of data science jobs facilitating the rise of data science professionals to encounter the supply-demand gap.

By 2024, a shortage of 250,000 data scientists is predicted in the United States alone. Data scientists have emerged as one of the hottest careers in the data world today. With digitization on the rise, IoT and cognitive technologies have generated a large number of data sets, thus, making it difficult for an organization to unlock the value of these data.

With the constant rise in data science, those fail to upgrade their skill set may be putting themselves at a competitive disadvantage. No doubt data science is still deemed as one of the best job titles today, but the battles for expert professionals in this field is fierce.

The hiring market for a data science professional has gone into overdrive making the competition even tougher. New online institutions have come up with credible certification programs for professionals to get skilled. Not to forget, organizations are in a hunt to hire candidates with data science and big data analytics skills, as these are the top skills that are going around in the market today. In addition to this, it is also said that typically it takes around 45 days for these job roles to be filled, which is five days longer than the average U.S. market.

Data science

One might come across several definitions for data science, however, a simple definition states that it is an accumulation of data, which is arranged and analyzed in a manner that will have an effect on businesses. According to Google, a data scientist is one who has the ability to analyze and interpret complex data, being able to make use of the statistic of a website and assist in business decision making. Also, one needs to be able to choose and build appropriate algorithms and predictive models that will help analyze data in a viable manner to uncover positive insights from it.

A data scientist job is now a buzzworthy career in the IT industry. It has driven a wider workforce to get skilled in this job role, as most organizations are becoming data-driven. It’s pretty obnoxious being a data professional will widen job opportunities and offer more chances of getting lucrative salary packages today. Similarly, let us look at a few points that define the future of data science to be bright.

  • Data science is still an evolving technology

A career without upskilling often remains redundant. To stay relevant in the industry, it is crucial that professionals get themselves upgraded in the latest technologies. Data science evolves to have an abundance of job opportunities in the coming decade. Since, the supply is low, it is a good call for professionals looking to get skilled in this field.

  • Organizations are still facing a challenge using data that is generated

Research by 2018 Data Security Confidence from Gemalto estimated that 65% of the organizations could not analyze or categorized the data they had stored. However, 89% said they could easily analyze the information prior they have a competitive edge. Being a data science professional, one can help organizations make progress with the data that is being gathered to draw positive insights.

  • In-demand skill-set

Most of the data scientists possess to have the in-demand skill set required by the current industry today. To be specific, since 2013 it is said that there has been a 256% increase in the data science jobs. Skills such as Machine Learning, R and Python programming, Predictive analytics, AI, and Data Visualization are the most common skills that employers seek from the candidates of today.

  • A humongous amount of data growing everyday

There are around 5 billion consumers that interact with the internet on a daily basis, this number is set to increase to 6 billion in 2025, thus, representing three-quarters of the world’s population.

In 2018, 33 zettabytes of data were generated and projected to rise to 133 zettabytes by 2025. The production of data will only keep increasing and data scientists will be the ones standing to guard these enterprises effectively.

  • Advancement in career

According to LinkedIn, data scientist was found to be the most promising career of 2019. The top reason for this job role to be ranked the highest is due to the salary compensation people were being awarded, a range of $130,000. The study also predicts that being a data scientist, there are high chances or earning a promotion giving a career advancement score of 9 out of 10.

Precisely, data science is still a fad job and will not cease until the foreseeable future.

Closing the AI-skills gap with Upskilling

Closing the AI-skills gap with Upskilling

Artificial Intelligent or as it is fancily referred as AI, has garnered huge popularity worldwide.  And given the career prospects it has, it definitely should. Almost everyone interested in technology sector has them rushing towards it, especially young and motivated fresh computer science graduates. Compared to other IT-related jobs AI pays way higher salary and have opportunities. According to a Glassdoor report, Data Scientist, one of the many related jobs, is the number one job with good salary, job openings and more. AI-related jobs include Data Scientists, Analysts, Machine Learning Engineer, NLP experts etc.

AI has found applications in almost every industry and thus it has picked up demand. Home assistants – Siri, Ok Google, Amazon Echo — chatbots, and more some of the popular applications of AI.

Increasing adoption of AI across Industry

The advantages of AI like increased productivity has increased its adoption among companies. According to Gartner, 37 percent of enterprise currently use AI in one way or the other. In fact, in the last four year adoption of AI technologies among companies has increased by 270 percent. In telecommunications, for instance, 52 percent of companies have chatbots deployed for better and smoother customer experience. Now, about 49 percent of businesses are now on their way to alter business models to integrate and adopt AI-driven processes. Further, industry leaders have gone beyond and voiced their concerns about companies that are lagging in AI adoption.

Unfortunately, it has been extremely difficult for employers to find right skilled or qualified candidates for AI-related positions. A reports suggests that there are total 300,000 AI professionals are available worldwide, while there’s demand for millions. In a recent survey conducted by Ernst & Young, 51 percent AI professionals told that lack of talent was the biggest impediment in AI adoption.

Further, O’Reilly, in 2018 conducted a survey, which found the lack of AI skills, among other things, was the major reason that was holding companies back from implementing AI.
The major reason for this is the lack of skills among people who aspire to get into AI-related jobs. According to a report, there demand for millions for jobs in AI. However, only a handful of qualified people are available.

Bridging the skill gap in AI-related jobs

Top companies and government around the world have taken up initiatives to close this gap. Google and Amazon, for instance, have dedicated facilities which trains in AI skills.  Google’s Brain Toronto is a dedicated facility to expand their talent in AI.  Similarly, Amazon has facility near University of Cambridge which is dedicated to AI. Most companies either already have a facility or are in the process of setting up one.

In addition to this, governments around the world are also taking initiatives to address the skill gap. For instance, government across the world are pushing towards AI advancement and are develop collaborative plans which aims at delivering more AI skilled professionals. Recently, the white house launched ai.gov which is further helping to promote AI in the US. The website will offer updates related to AI projects across different sectors.

Other than these, companies have taken this upon themselves to reskills their employees and prepare them for future roles. According to a report from Towards Data Science, about 63 percent of companies have in-house training programs to train employees in AI-related skills.

Overall, though there is demand for AI professionals, lack of skilled talent is a major problem.

Roles in Artificial Intelligence
Artificial Intelligence is the most dominant role for which companies hire across artificial Intelligence. Other than that, following are some of the popular roles:

  1. Machine learning Engineer: These are the people who make machines learn with complex algorithms. On advance level, Machine learning engineers are required to have good knowledge of computer vision. According to Indeed, in the last year, demand for Machine Learning Engineer has grown by 344 percent.
  2. NLP Experts: These experts are equipped with the understanding of making machines computer understand human language. Their expertise includes knowledge of how machines understand human language. Text-to-speech technologies are the common areas which require NLP experts. Demand for engineers who can program computers to understand human speech is growing continuously. It was the fast growing skills in Upwork’s list of in-demand freelancing skills. In Q4, 2016, it had grown 200 percent and since then has been on continuously growing.
  3. Big Data Engineers: This is majorly an analytics role. These gather huge amount of data available from sources and analyze it to derive insights and understand patter, which may be further used for machine learning, prediction modelling, natural language processing. In Mckinsey annual report 2018, it had reported that there was shortage of 190,000 big data professionals in the US alone.

Other roles like Data Scientists, Analysts, and more also in great demand. Then, again due to insufficient talent in the market, companies are struggling to hire for these roles.

Self-learning and upskilling
Artificial Intelligence is a continuously growing field and it has been advancing at a very fast pace, and it makes extremely difficult to keep up with in-demand skills. Hence, it is imperative to keep yourself up with demand of the industry, or it is just a matter of time before one becomes redundant.

On an individual level, learning new skills is necessary. One has to be agile and keep learning, and be ready to adapt new technologies. For this, AI training programs and certifications are ideal.  There are numerous AI programs which individuals can take to further learn new skills. AI certifications can immensely boost career opportunities. Certification programs offer a structured approach to learning which benefits in learning mostly practical and executional skills while keeping fluff away. It is more hands-on. Plus, certifications programs qualify only when one has passed practical test which is very advantageous in tech. AI certifications like AIE (Artificial Intelligence Engineer) are quite popular.

Online learning platforms also offer good a resource to learn artificial intelligence. Most schools haven’t yet adapted their curriculum to skill for AI, while most universities and grad schools are in their way to do so. In the meantime, online learning platforms offer a good way to learn AI skills, where one can start from basic and reach to advance skills.

Business Intelligence Organizations

I am often asked how the Business Intelligence department should be set up and how it should interact and collaborate with other departments. First and foremost: There is no magic recipe here, but every company must find the right organization for itself.

Before we can talk about organization of BI, we need to have a clear definition of roles for team members within a BI department.

A Data Engineer (also Database Developer) uses databases to save structured, semi-structured and unstructured data. He or she is responsible for data cleaning, data availability, data models and also for the database performance. Furthermore, a good Data Engineer has at least basic knowledge about data security and data privacy. A Data Engineer uses SQL and NoSQL-Technologies.

A Data Analyst (also BI Analyst or BI Consultant) uses the data delivered by the Data Engineer to create or adjust data models and implementing business logic in those data models and BI dashboards. He or she needs to understand the needs of the business. This job requires good communication and consulting skills as well as good developing skills in SQL and BI Tools such like MS Power BI, Tableau or Qlik.

A Business Analyst (also Business Data Analyst) is a person form any business department who has basic knowledge in data analysis. He or she has good knowledge in MS Excel and at least basic knowledge in data analysis and BI Tools. A Business Analyst will not create data models in databases but uses existing data models to create dashboards or to adjust existing data analysis applications. Good Business Analyst have SQL Skills.

A Data Scientist is a Data Analyst with extended skills in statistics and machine learning. He or she can use very specific tools and analytical methods for finding pattern in unknow or big data (Data Mining) or to predict events based on pattern calculated by using historized data (Predictive Analytics). Data Scientists work mostly with Python or R programming.

Organization Type 1 – Central Approach (Data Lab)

The first type of organization is the data lab approach. This organization form is easy to manage because it’s focused and therefore clear in terms of budgeting. The data delivery is done centrally by experts and their method and technology knowledge. Consequently, the quality expectation of data delivery and data analysis as well as the whole development process is highest here. Also the data governance is simple and the responsibilities clearly adjustable. Not to be underestimated is the aspect of recruiting, because new employees and qualified applicants like to join a central team of experts.

However, this form of organization requires that the company has the right working attitude, especially in the business intelligence department. A centralized business intelligence department acts as a shared service. Accordingly, customer-oriented thinking becomes a prerequisite for the company’s success – and customers here are the other departments that need access to the capacities of those centralized data experts. Communication boundaries must be overcome and ways of simple and effective communication must be found.

Organization Type 2 – Stakeholder Focus Approach

Other companies want to shift more responsibility for data governance, and especially data use and analytics, to those departments where data plays a key role right now. A central business intelligence department manages its own projects, which have a meaning for the entire company. The specialist departments, which have a special need for data analysis, have their own data experts who carry out critical projects for the specialist department. The central Business Intelligence department does not only provide the technical delivery of data, but also through methodical consulting. Although most of the responsibility lies with the Business Intelligence department, some other data-focused departments are at least co-responsible.

The advantage is obvious: There are special data experts who work deeper in the actual departments and feel more connected and responsible to them. The technical-business focus lies on pain points of the company.

However, this form of Ogranization also has decisive disadvantages: The danger of developing isolated solutions that are so special in some specific areas that they will not really work company-wide increases. Typically the company has to deal with asymmetrical growth of data analytics
know-how. Managing data governance is more complex and recruitment is becoming more difficult as the business intelligence department is weakened and smaller, and data professionals for other departments need to have more business focus, which means they are looking for more specialized profiles.

Organization Type 3 – Decentral Approach

Some companies are also taking a more extreme approach in the other direction. The Business Intelligence department now has only Data Engineers building and maintaining the data warehouse or data lake. As a result, the central department only provides data; it is used and analyzed in all other departments, specifically for the respective applications.

The advantage lies in the personal responsibility of the respective departments as „pain points“ of the company are in focus in belief that business departments know their problems and solutions better than any other department does. Highly specialized data experts can understand colleagues of their own department well and there is no no shared service mindset neccessary, except for the data delivery.

Of course, this organizational form has clear disadvantages since many isolated solutions are unavoidable and the development process of each data-driven solution will be inefficient. These insular solutions may work with luck for your own department, but not for the whole company. There is no one single source of truth. The recruiting process is more difficult as it requires more specialized data experts with more business background. We have to expect an asymmetrical growth of data analytics know-how and a difficult data governance.

 

Endspurt Bewerbungsphase: Zertifikatsstudium „Data Science and Big Data“ 2019

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Bewerben Sie sich noch bis zum 12. November 2018 für das berufsbegleitende Zertifikatsstudium „Data Science and Big Data“. Die 3. Studiengruppe startet im Februar 2019 an der Technischen Universität Dortmund.

Renommierte Wissenschaftlerinnen und Wissenschaftler vermitteln den Teilnehmerinnen und Teilnehmern die neuesten datenwissenschaftlichen Erkenntnisse und zeigen, wie dieses Wissen praxisnah im eigenen Big-Data Projekt umgesetzt werden kann.

Von der Analyse über das Management bis zur zielgerichteten Darstellung der Ergebnisse lernen die Teilnehmenden dabei Methoden der Disziplinen Statistik, Informatik und Journalistik kennen.

Nähere Informationen finden Sie unter: http://www.zhb.tu-dortmund.de/datascience

Bei Fragen oder für weitere Informationen können Sie sich gerne an Frau Maier wenden: simona.maier@tu-dortmund.de

 

Weiterbildungsmodul: Machine Learning mit Python

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Lernen ist ein zentraler Faktor von Intelligenz. Die Realisierung intelligenter Systeme durch Computer, die nicht programmiert sondern angelernt werden, ist das Ziel von Künstlicher Intelligenz. Maschinelles Lernen befasst sich mit den dazu notwendigen Methoden und Algorithmen. Diese formulieren unterschiedliche Lernziele, adressieren diverse Anwendungsgebiete und stellen verschiedene Anforderungen an die vorhandenen Daten.

Jeder der beruflich größere Datenmengen intelligent nutzen will, um aus ihnen einen Mehrwert zu erzeugen, braucht daher zum einen ein Überblickswissen über Maschinelles Lernen. Zum anderen wird ein tieferes algorithmisches Verständnis benötigt, um Aufwände abzuschätzen und durch Anpassungen Erfolgsraten zu erhöhen. Ziele des Angebots ist es daher, Teilnehmerinnen und Teilnehmer in diesem Sinne für Maschinelles Lernen (theoretisch und praktisch) fit zu machen. Wir werden mit Python und zugehörigen Bibliotheken arbeiten, die Open Source und State-of-the-Art Implementierungen anbieten. Auch Aspekte des Maschinellen Lernens in der Cloud werden mit konkreten Beispielen behandelt.

Maschinelles Lernen ist der algorithmische Kern vieler aktueller Technologien und Entwicklungen bei denen es darum geht, aus Daten zu lernen und dann optimale Entscheidungen zu treffen. Die Algorithmen können aber auch künstlerisch tätig werden und sogar träumen. Ein paar Prognosen sagen sogar voraus, dass der Computer intelligenter als der Mensch werden wird.

Weiterbildungsangebot der AWW und der TH Brandenburg: Machine Learning mit Python

Die Besonderheit des Weiterbildungsangebotes „Machine Learning mit Python“ ist, dass nicht nur einzelne Algorithmen theoretisch abgehandelt werden. Die praktische Anwendung und das Lösen einer echten Aufgabe stehen im Vordergrund. In einer sogenannten “Data Challenge” können sich die Kursteilnehmer dabei mit den Studierenden der Vorlesung “Data Mining” im Masterstudiengang Informatik der Technischen Hochschule Brandenburg messen.

Beim Maschinellen Lernen verderben viele Köche nicht etwa den Brei, sondern machen ihn besser. Dies geschieht mittels sogenannter Ensemble-Methoden, die mehrere Modelle geeignet kombinieren. Welche zwei Standard-Ansätze es dazu gibt und wie diese funktionieren werden die Teilnehmer ebenfalls im Kurs lernen. Natürlich wird auch „Deep Learning“ als das zurzeit heißeste Gebiet von Maschinellem Lernen ein Thema sein. Damit dies alles gelingt wird als technologische Grundlage Python genutzt.

Mit der Programmiersprache Python ist es möglich sofort interaktiv zu beginnen, so dass man sich ganz auf seine Aufgabe, die Daten und ihre Analyse konzentrieren kann. Auch ohne Informatiker zu sein, kann man so schnell Algorithmen des Maschinellen Lernens anwenden und erste Resultate erzielen. Das geht oft bereits mit 20 bis30 Zeilen Code, so behält man leicht den Überblick.

Mit Python kann man bei seinem vertrauten Betriebssystem bleiben. Python ist plattformunabhängig, so dass man seinen Code überallhin mitnehmen kann. Im Bereich von Machine Learning ist Python mit entsprechenden Bibliotheken sehr gut aufgestellt, oft sind die verfügbaren Algorithmen state-of-the-art. Die Frameworks beim sogenannten Deep Learning, das spektakuläre Resultate in Serie erzeugt, setzen nahezu ausschließlich auf Python. Python ist sehr breit einsetzbar, so dass es auch auf sehr spezifische Themen und Fragestellungen angewendet werden kann. Es wird in vielen unterschiedlichen Gebieten angewendet und weiterentwickelt. Deswegen kennen viele, die ihren Hintergrund nicht in der Informatik haben, Python vielleicht bereits.

Ansprechperson:
Dr. Annette Strauß
T +49 3381 355 750
M annette.strauss@aww-brandenburg.de

Interview – Künstliche Intelligenz im Unternehmen & der Mangel an IT-Fachkräften

Interview mit Sebastian van der Meer über den Einsatz von künstlicher Intelligenz im Unternehmen und dem Mangel an IT-Fachkräften

Sebastian van der Meer

Sebastian van der Meer ist Managing Partner der lexoro Gruppe, einem Technologie- und Beratungsunternehmen in den Zukunftsmärkten: Data-Science, Machine-Learning, Big-Data, Robotics und DevOps. Das Leistungsspektrum ist vielschichtig. Sie vermitteln Top-Experten an Unternehmen (Perm & IT-Contracting), arbeiten mit eigenen Teams für innovative Unternehmen an spannenden IT-Projekten und entwickeln zugleich eigene Produkte und Start-Ups in Zukunftsmärkten. Dabei immer im Mittelpunkt: Menschen und deren Verbindung mit exzellenter Technologiekompetenz.

Data Science Blog: Herr van der Meer, wenn man Google News mit den richtigen Stichwörtern abruft, scheinen die Themen Künstliche Intelligenz, Data Science und Machine Learning bei vielen Unternehmen bereits angekommen zu sein – Ist das so?

Das ist eine sehr gute Frage! Weltweit, vor allem in der USA und China, sind diese bereits „angekommen“, wenn man es so formulieren kann. Allerdings sind wir in Europa leider weit hinterher. Dazu gibt es ja bereits viele Studien und Umfragen, die dies beweisen. Vereinzelt gibt es große mittelständische- und Konzernunternehmen in Deutschland, die bereits eigene Einheiten und Teams in diesen Bereich und auch neue Geschäftsbereiche dadurch ermöglicht haben. Hier gibt es bereits tolle Beispiele, was mit K.I. erreichbar ist. Vor allem die Branchen Versicherungs- und Finanzdienstleistungen, Pharma/Life Science und Automotive sind den anderen in Deutschland etwas voraus.

Data Science Blog: Wird das Thema Data Science oder Machine Learning früher oder später für jedes Unternehmen relevant sein? Muss jedes Unternehmen sich mit K.I. befassen?

Data Science, Machine Learning, künstliche Intelligenz – das sind mehr als bloße Hype-Begriffe und entfernte Zukunftsmusik! Wir stecken mitten in massiven strukturellen Veränderungen. Die Digitalisierungswelle der vergangenen Jahre war nur der Anfang. Jede Branche ist betroffen. Schnell kann ein Gefühl von Bedrohung und Angst vor dem Unbekannten aufkommen. Tatsächlich liegen aber nie zuvor dagewesene Chancen und Potentiale vor unseren Füßen. Die Herausforderung ist es diese zu erkennen und dann die notwendigen Veränderungen umzusetzen. Daher sind wir der Meinung, dass jedes Unternehmen sich damit befassen muss und soll, wenn es in der Zukunft noch existieren will.

Wir unterstützen Unternehmen dabei ihre individuellen Herausforderungen, Hürden und Möglichkeiten zu identifizieren, die der große Hype „künstliche Intelligenz“ mit sich bringt. Hier geht es darum genau zu definieren, welche KI-Optionen überhaupt für das Unternehmen existieren. Mit Use-Cases zeigen wir, welchen Mehrwert sie dem Unternehmen bieten. Wenn die K.I. Strategie festgelegt ist, unterstützen wir bei der technischen Implementierung und definieren und rekrutieren bei Bedarf die relevanten Mitarbeiter.

Data Science Blog: Die Politik strebt stets nach Vollbeschäftigung. Die K.I. scheint diesem Leitziel entgegen gerichtet zu sein. Glauben Sie hier werden vor allem Ängste geschürt oder sind die Auswirkungen auf den Arbeitsmarkt durch das Vordringen von K.I. wirklich so gravierend?

Zu diesem Thema gibt es bereits viele Meinungen und Studien, die veröffentlicht worden sind. Eine interessante Studie hat vorhergesagt, dass in den nächsten 5 Jahren, weltweit 1.3 Millionen Stellen/Berufe durch K.I. wegfallen werden. Dafür aber in den gleichen Zeitnahmen 1.7 Millionen neue Stellen und Berufe entstehen werden. Hier gehen die Meinungen aber ganz klar auseinander. Die Einen sehen die Chancen, die Möglichkeiten und die Anderen sehen die Angst oder das Ungewisse. Eins steht fest, der Arbeitsmarkt wird sich in den nächsten 5 bis 10 Jahren komplett verändern und anpassen. Viele Berufe werden wegfallen, dafür werden aber viele neue Berufe hinzukommen. Vor einigen Jahren gab es noch keinen „Data Scientist“ Beruf und jetzt ist es einer der best bezahltesten IT Stellen in Unternehmen. Allein das zeigt doch auch, welche Chancen es in der Zukunft geben wird.

Data Science Blog: Wie sieht der Arbeitsmarkt in den Bereichen Data Science, Machine Learning und Künstliche Intelligenz aus?

Der Markt ist sehr intransparent. Jeder definiert einen Data Scientist anders. Zudem wird sich der Beruf und seine Anforderungen aufgrund des technischen Fortschritts stetig verändern. Der heutige Data Scientist wird sicher nicht der gleiche Data Scientist in 5 oder 10 Jahren sein. Die Anforderungen sind enorm hoch und die Konkurrenz, der sogenannte „War of Talents“ ist auch in Deutschland angekommen. Der Anspruch an Veränderungsbereitschaft und technisch stets up to date und versiert zu sein, ist extrem hoch. Das gleiche gilt auch für die anderen K.I. Berufe von heute, wie z.B. den Computer Vision Engineer, der Robotics Spezialist oder den DevOps Engineer.

Data Science Blog: Worauf sollten Unternehmen vor, während und nach der Einstellung von Data Scientists achten?

Das Allerwichtigste ist der Anfang. Es sollte ganz klar definiert sein, warum die Person gesucht wird, was die Aufgaben sind und welche Ergebnisse sich das Unternehmen mit der Einstellung erwartet bzw. erhofft. Oftmals hören wir von Unternehmen, dass sie Spezialisten in dem Bereich Data Science / Machine Learning suchen und große Anforderungen haben, aber diese gar nicht umgesetzt werden können, weil z.B. die Datengrundlage im Unternehmen fehlt. Nur 5% der Data Scientists in unserem Netzwerk sind der Ansicht, dass vorhandene Daten in ihrem Unternehmen bereits optimal verwertet werden. Der Data Scientist sollte schnell ins Unternehmen integriert werde um schnellstmöglich Ergebnisse erzielen zu können. Um die wirklich guten Leute für sich zu gewinnen, muss ein Unternehmen aber auch bereit sein finanziell tiefer in die Tasche zu greifen. Außerdem müssen die Unternehmen den top Experten ein technisch attraktives Umfeld bieten, daher sollte auch die Unternehmen stets up-to-date sein mit der heutigen Technologie.

Data Science Blog: Was macht einen guten Data Scientist eigentlich aus?

Ein guter Data Scientist sollte in folgenden Bereichen sehr gut aufgestellt sein: Präsentations- und Kommunikationsfähigkeiten, Machine Learning Kenntnisse, Programmiersprachen und ein allgemeines Business-Verständnis. Er sollte sich stets weiterentwickeln und von den Trends up to date sein. Auf relevanten Blogs, wie dieser Data Science Blog, aktiv sein und sich auf Messen/Meetups etc bekannt machen.

Außerdem sollte er sich mit uns in Verbindung setzen. Denn ein weiterer, wie wir finden, sehr wichtiger Punkt, ist es sich gut verkaufen zu können. Hierzu haben wir uns in dem letzten Jahr sehr viel Gedanken gemacht und auch Studien durchgeführt. Wir wollen es jedem K.I. -Experten ermöglichen einen eigenen Fingerabdruck zu haben. Bei uns ist dies als der SkillPrint bekannt. Hierfür haben wir eine holistische Darstellung entwickelt, die jeden Kandidaten einen individuellen Fingerabdruck seiner Kompetenzen abbildet. Hierfür durchlaufen die Kandidaten einen Online-Test, der von uns mit top K.I. Experten entwickelt wurde. Dieser bildet folgendes ab: Methoden Expertise, Applied Data Science Erfahrung, Branchen know-how, Technology & Tools und Business knowledge. Und die immer im Detail in 3 Ebenen.

Der darauf entstehende SkillPrint/Fingerprint ist ein Qualitätssigel für den Experten und damit auch für das Unternehmen, das den Experten einstellt.

Interesse an einem Austausch zu verschiedenen Karriereperspektiven im Bereich Data Science/ Machine Learning? Dann registrieren Sie sich direkt auf dem lexoro Talent Check-In und ein lexoro-Berater wird sich bei Ihnen melden.

Interview – Von der Utopie zur Realität der KI: Möglichkeiten und Grenzen

Interview mit Prof. Dr. Sven Buchholz über die Evolution von der Utopie zur Realität der KI – Möglichkeiten und Grenzen

Prof. Sven Buchholz hat eine Professur für die Fachgebiete Data Management und Data Mining am Fachbereich Informatik und Medien an der TH Brandenburg inne. Er ist wissenschaftlicher Leiter des an der Agentur für wissenschaftliche Weiterbildung und Wissenstransfer – AWW e. V. angesiedelten Projektes „Datenkompetenz 4.0 für eine digitale Arbeitswelt“ und Dozent des Vertiefungskurses „Machine Learning mit Python“, der seit 2018 von der AWW e. V. in Kooperation mit der TH Brandenburg angeboten wird.

Data Science Blog: Herr Prof. Buchholz, künstliche Intelligenz ist selbst für viele datenaffine Fachkräfte als Begriff noch zu abstrakt und wird mit Filmen wir A.I. von Steven Spielberg oder Terminator assoziiert. Gibt es möglicherweise unterscheidbare Stufen bzw. Reifegrade einer KI?

Für den Reifegrad einer KI könnte man, groß gedacht, ihre kognitiven Leistungen bewerten. Was Kognition angeht, dürfte Hollywood zurzeit aber noch meilenweit führen.  Man kann natürlich KIs im selben Einsatzgebiet vergleichen. Wenn von zwei Robotern einer lernt irgendwann problemlos durch die Tür zu fahren und der andere nicht, dann gibt es da schon einen Sieger. Wesentlich ist hier das Lernen, und da geht es dann auch weiter. Kommt er auch durch andere Türen, auch wenn ein Sensor
ausfällt?

Data Science Blog: Künstliche Intelligenz, Machine Learning und Deep Learning sind sicherlich die Trendbegriffe dieser Jahre. Wie stehen sie zueinander?

Deep Learning ist ein Teilgebiet von Machine Learning und das ist wiederum ein Teil von KI. Deep Learning meint eigentlich nur tiefe neuronale Netze (NN). Das sind Netze, die einfach viele Schichten von Neuronen haben und folglich als tief bezeichnet werden. Viele Architekturen, insbesondere auch die oft synonym mit Deep Learning assoziierten sogenannten Convolutional NNs gibt es seit Ewigkeiten. Solche Netze heute einsetzen zu können verdanken wir der Möglichkeit auf Grafikkarten rechnen zu können. Ohne Daten würde das uns aber auch nichts nützen. Netze lernen aus Daten (Beispielen) und es braucht für erfolgreiches Deep Learning sehr viele davon. Was wir oft gerade sehen ist also, was man mit genug vorhandenen Daten „erschlagen“ kann. Machine Learning sind alle Algorithmen, die ein Modell als Ouput liefern. Die Performanz von Modellen ist messbar, womit ich quasi auch noch eine Antwort zur ersten Frage nachreichen will.

Data Science Blog: Sie befassen sich beruflich seit Jahren mit künstlicher Intelligenz. Derzeitige Showcases handeln meistens über die Bild- oder Spracherkennung. Zweifelsohne wichtige Anwendungen, doch für Wirtschaftsunternehmen meistens zu abstrakt und zu weit weg vom Kerngeschäft. Was kann KI für Unternehmen noch leisten?

Scherzhaft oder vielleicht boshaft könnte man sagen, alles was Digitalisierung ihnen versprochen hat.
Wenn sie einen Chat-Bot einsetzen, sollte der durch KI besser werden. Offensichtlich ist das jetzt kein Anwendungsfall, der jedes Unternehmen betrifft. Mit anderen Worten, es hängt vom Kerngeschäft ab. Das klingt jetzt etwas ausweichend, meint aber auch ganz konkret die Ist-Situation.
Welche Prozesse sind jetzt schon datengetrieben, welche Infrastruktur ist vorhanden. Wo ist schon wie optimiert worden? Im Einkauf, im Kundenmanagement und so weiter.

Data Science Blog: Es scheint sich also zu lohnen, in das Thema fachlich einzusteigen. Was braucht man dazu? Welches Wissen sollte als Grundlage vorhanden sein? Und: Braucht man dazu einen Mindest-IQ?

Gewisse mathematische und informatorische Grundlagen braucht man sicher relativ schnell. Zum Beispiel: Wie kann man Daten statistisch beschreiben, was darf man daraus folgern? Wann ist etwas signifikant? Einfache Algorithmen für Standardprobleme sollte man formal hinschreiben können und implementieren können. Welche Komplexität hat der Algorithmus, wo genau versteckt sie sich? Im Prinzip geht es aber erst einmal darum, dass man mit keinem Aspekt von Data Science Bauchschmerzen hat. Einen Mindest-IQ braucht es also nur insofern, um diese Frage für sich selbst beantworten zu können.

Data Science Blog: Gibt es aus Ihrer Sicht eine spezielle Programmiersprache, die sich für das Programmieren einer KI besonders eignet?

Das dürfte für viele Informatiker fast eine Glaubensfrage sein, auch weil es natürlich davon abhängt,
was für eine KI das sein soll. Für Machine Learning und Deep Learning lautet meine Antwort aber ganz klar Python. Ein Blick auf die bestimmenden Frameworks und Programmierschnittstellen ist da
ziemlich eindeutig.

Data Science Blog: Welche Trends im Bereich Machine Learning bzw. Deep Learning werden Ihrer Meinung nach im kommenden Jahr 2019 von Bedeutung werden?

Bei den Deep Learning Anwendungen interessiert mich, wie es mit Sprache weitergeht. Im Bereich Machine Learning denke ich, dass Reinforcement Learning weiter an Bedeutung gewinnt. KI-Chips halte ich für einen der kommenden Trends.

Data Science Blog: Es heißt, dass Data Scientist gerade an ihrer eigenen Arbeitslosigkeit arbeiten, da zukünftige Verfahren des maschinellen Lernens Data Mining selbstständig durchführen können. Werden Tools Data Scientists bald ersetzen?

Die Prognosen für das jährliche Datenwachstum liegen ja momentan so bei 30%. Wichtiger als diese Zahl alleine ist aber, dass dieses Wachstum von Daten kommt, die von Unternehmen generiert werden. Dieser Anteil wird über die nächsten Jahre ständig und rasant weiter wachsen. Nach den einfachen Problemen kommen also erst einmal mehr einfache Probleme und/oder mehr anspruchsvollere Probleme statt Arbeitslosigkeit. Richtig ist aber natürlich, dass Data Scientists zukünftig methodisch mehr oder speziellere Kompetenzen abdecken müssen. Deswegen haben die AWW e. V. und die TH Brandenburg ihr Weiterbildungsangebot um das Modul ‚Machine Learning mit Python‘ ergänzt.

Data Science Blog: Für alle Studenten, die demnächst ihren Bachelor, beispielsweise in Informatik, Mathematik, Ingenieurwesen oder Wirtschaftswissenschaften, abgeschlossen haben, was würden Sie diesen jungen Damen und Herren raten, wie sie gute Data Scientists mit gutem Verständnis für Machine Learning werden können?

Neugierig sein wäre ein Tipp von mir. Im Bereich Deep Learning gibt es ja ständig neue Ideen, neue Netze. Die Implementierungen sind meist verfügbar, also kann und sollte man die Sachen ausprobieren. Je mehr Netze sie selbst zum Laufen gebracht und angewendet haben, umso besser werden sie.  Und auch nur so  verlieren sie nicht den Anschluss.