For the past few years, the drumbeat of think pieces about automation taking your job–yes, your job–has gotten both louder and more incessant. Smart people like the folks at Oxford Martin and Gartner forecast more and more jobs being gobbled up by our mechanical overlords and President Obama made a passing reference in his otherwise upbeat final State of the Union address. But technological unemployment has been around forever; you can actually go back to the ancient Greeks here or the famous example of English luddites throwing their shoes into weaving machines they felt were destroying the textile industry (fun fact: those shoes were called "sabots" and yes, that's where the word "sabotage" comes from). The point is, societies have forever dealt with technological unemployment. But even as automation continues–and make no mistake, it absolutely will–don't buy into the Chicken Littles who say your job–yes, your job–is next. Automation isn't coming to take your job. Rather, it's just coming to take the most boring parts of it.
There are precious few things that everybody adores. Once you get past breakfast in bed and two dollar bills, the list starts to look a little barren. But if there's one thing we can agree on as a society it's this: free stuff is good and cool and you want some of it right now.
Late last year, we hosted the Rich Data Summit. Fundamentally, it was an industry event where we brought in some of the smartest speakers in the data science landscape to share their views on the present and future of the field. After announcing the Beta release of our new AI offering, my attention turned to our customer panel on ‘The State of Data Science’, where in a moment of shameless self-interest, I used the fact I was tabbed as moderator to frame that session as an opportunity to understand the voice of the Data Scientist. It was important that every CrowdFlower employee in that room heard how they work, what interests, motivates (and de-motivates) them and their teams. Here's the video, if you'd like to take a look:
It's a brand new year and that means you'll be seeing scads of trend pieces this week. As you can probably assume from the title, we're not necessarily immune to that sort of thing ourselves. That said? Ours isn't based on analysts and insider opinion. It's based on real live data–in this case, thousands of LinkedIn job openings for data scientists.
While large swaths of Twitterdom were playing drinking games during the GOP Debate two nights ago, we had some fun of our own playing with our machine learning classifier. Here's what we learned: