The Data Science Handbook


I learned about this book through Quora where I participate quite often. I was very curious about the book. Both because it was a handbook and for the people that participated in it, from authors to guests.

When I started reading the book I was disappointed. I felt that I didn’t want to read interviews, even if the list included Dj Patil, Mike Dewar, Kevin Novak and Michael Hochster. I had a “Asked to Answer” question on Quora to review the book. I was asked by William Chen. I consider William as very bright young man that is as willing to help as he is knowledgeable. I felt that I had to at the very least try to read.

I was amazed.

The first interviewee is Dj Patil, Chief Data Scientist for Barack Obama and co-author of the article that coined the term Data Scientist, calling it the sexiest job of the 21st century. His views on data science were not new to me. What surprised me was the depth of his insights.

From that moment on I was hooked. I don’t agree with the title of the book. I would expect a handbook to be a manual of operations. But apart from that it is a good reading, a journey to the thoughts of the people that are the past, present and future of data science.

To get the book on a “pay a fair price” follow this link. If you want the physical book, check it on Amazon.

2 thoughts on “The Data Science Handbook

  1. I agree that the insights are worthwhile in themselves, but I got something else out of the book too.

    I’ve mostly gone with the self-teaching route when it comes to skills pertaining to web development and data science, and this route of course requires a heavy investment of time and emotion. When I’d start my day, I would read this and it would kind of kick-start my drive. Sometimes I would read an interview or two in between study sets as well. There is something powerful about being exposed to the field—the diversity of backgrounds, challenges, and applications are things I’ve found to be very motivating (I’m also in love with cognitive science). The idea of possibly working with some of these interviewees one day was inspiring as well, but I won’t put too much weight on that objectively since what is exposed is consciously selected, as are the people. But regardless, sometimes it doesn’t hurt to employ a little bit of bias to use our perception as tools.

    tl;dr, the book is simple, insightful, and can be used as a motivational boost before and between study sessions.


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