General Discussions

Data Science, the Definition


From a new explored area to common house hold name to every engineer, Data Science is now being explored in almost every filed. There have been experts today from numerous fields, who share their perspective of what a data science means, in the way they have researched.

Wikipedia puts it this way:
Data science, also known as data-driven science, is an interdisciplinary field about scientific processes and systems to extract knowledge or insights from data in various forms, either structured or unstructured, which is a continuation of some of the data analysis fields such as statistics, machine learning, data mining, and predictive analytics, similar to Knowledge Discovery in Databases.

Tech Target defines it the following way:
Data science is the study of where information comes from, what it represents and how it can be turned into a valuable resource in the creation of business and IT strategies. Mining large amounts of structured and unstructured data to identify patterns can help an organization rein in costs, increase efficiencies, recognize new market opportunities and increase the organization’s competitive advantage.

NYU in its description states it as:
At its core, data science involves using automated methods to analyze massive amounts of data and to extract knowledge from them.

This definition of Data Science by the Professor, Jennifer Widom is aptly put. She says big data is about two things: First is collecting large data and second is doing something with it. The process of going from first to second is the Data Science. This definition puts many of the current hot research areas together into a single basket.

There have been numerous such definitions as curated by many experts. By and large it talks about applying the science to data. Data science has today led to data scientist jobs. The future awaits a lot more yet to be explored. The way coding is expected to be a measure of literacy; data science is going to be too common to be known. Today, with related subjects which has led to masters program would be no wonder if it turns to be a separate branch of study in very near future.


[4] Lecture Notes Slides from J. Widom, Stanford University


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