Becoming a data scientist

Data vs. Spock (70/365)
Data vs. Spock (70/365) by JD Hancock (CC-BY)

It is is interesting how a job title carries certain connotations and how it can even be tailored to different situations. Sometimes I have called myself a Consultant, because this is what consultancies expect. Sometimes I have called myself a Developer, because that is what hiring companies expect. Sometimes I have called myself a Software Engineer, because it sounds good to Google and Amazon. All of the titles are technically correct (I hope), but create slightly different associations and expectations.

In my current position at Receiptful, things are a bit different. I am now a Data Scientist. This is not a title I applied for or have ever used about myself. If someone called me a data scientist before I started at Receiptful, my response would be: “Well, I don’t feel like a data scientist. I’m a developer with knowledge of data mining.”

This is the first time I have not made up my own title. It was handed to me and now I have to live up to it. The funny thing for me personally is that “data scientist” is actually a title I have aspired to have for a long time, but I just never felt that I was entitled to call myself a data scientist. Data science is such a hot topic right now, and I really do not want to seem fake.

So for now, I will continue to build cool stuff and hopefully, the title becomes self-evident after a while. Time will tell :-)

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