Owen Zhang is ranked #1 on Kaggle, the online stadium for data science competitions. An engineer by training, Zhang says that data science is finding “practical solutions to not very well-defined problems,” similar to engineering. He believes that good data scientists, “otherwise known as unicorn data scientists,” have three types of expertise. Since data science deals with practical problems, the first one is being familiar with a specific domain and knowing how to solve a problem in that domain. The second is the ability to distinguish signal from noise, or understanding statistics. The third skill is software engineering.
Zhang, Chief Product Officer at DataRobot, shares in this talk his experience with open source tools in data science competitions. Slides here.