Data Science is Growing: But Why Now?

Loraine Lawson

Here’s a question: Why is data science such a big deal these days?

Big Data, obviously, but it’s not just that, contends veteran IT analyst Robin Bloor.

In a follow up to his rant about the term “data scientist,” Bloor actually promotes the importance of data science as a practice, if not the terminology.


He sees 10 reasons data science is gathering so much momentum. While all relate back to Big Data, it’s important to realize that Big Data didn’t just spring from the CIO’s head, fully clothed, like some sort of silicon Athena.

Slide Show

Four Steps to a Big Data Strategy

No, there are significant technology trends that support the growth of Big Data, including:

  • The open source movement
  • Hadoop. His reasoning isn’t as obvious as you’d think. “The primary contribution of a Hadoop is that it has provided a scale-out data platform that is schema-free,” Bloor writes. “Because of Hadoop there is no need to do immediate data modeling work if you want to collect data and both cleanse and transform it for use on data science projects.”
  • R language, aka the langue of data analysts.  With 5 million users, R “has become a kind of usage-driven standard which in itself encourages analytical activity, modeling and prototyping,” he writes.
  •  Parallelism and faster hardware
  • Machine learning algorithms and machine-generated data sharing
  • The realization that Big Data can be a way to grow revenue or reduce costs, including risks

Check out the full list. It’s a good read and I think speaks to how pervasive Big Data technologies already have become.



Add Comment      Leave a comment on this blog post
Sep 12, 2013 5:14 PM medicalquack medicalquack  says:
I think the name is oxymoron as it's not "science" and quant fits better to describe what they do. It's all about making money whether it is increasing efficiencies with information or contributing to the Data Selling Epidemic we have in the US. Banks and companies are selling data, making billions and has an absolute free labor force to fix their errors as we are stuck until we do with getting a loan, job, you name it. Look at the news and I started talking about it about 3 years ago we don't have a good balance of tangibles and intangibles. Every one was the easy buck with flipping algorithms for profit. Why would a company build a new plant and hire people when they can mine the web and not have the output, going on more than you think and it hurts consumers as well. We are stuck with this awful system. Look at Walgreens hauling in about a billion a year just from selling data...now bring in the banks and tons of other companies out there. Big problem and we don't have an IT infrastructure to regulate, like having all licensed. Look at health insurance companies making big money selling data. http://ducknetweb.blogspot.com/2013/08/ftc-tries-to-bring-stro Reply

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