I'm a great proponent of the "data science is a VERY broad church" school of thought. ML and AI are just a small sliver of the areas you might get involved in but they certainly aren't the whole thing.
I know there is a lot of gatekeeping even around the phrase "data science" and it annoys me a lot. We should be encouraging as many people to get into all areas of analytics/data science as possible.
A lower barrier to entry path is building SQL and Excel skills to help encourage analytical thinking as a stepping stone to further technology development as they progress.
I've probably undercooked the really important part which is data literacy. Get that sorted early and the coding/tech parts can be bolted on. Without data literacy and business knowledge, you can know all the programming languages in the world and still be virtually useless as an analyst.
Interesting concept, Data Literacy en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Data_literacy ... I think that's something which even kids in primary school could be successfully exposed to.
I'm 100% with you on the gatekeeping thing, that's just an elitist trick to keep "unwanted outsiders" out of one's privileged niche, keeping salaries high and promoting an air of mystery and "high tech" around the subject ... not good for companies, and also not for motivated and potentially talented candidates.
Virtual high fives on both points.
We have to take the long term view on embedding data literacy so primary school is the perfect starting point. Make it second nature for all kids to understand the basic concepts and reap the benefits in all spheres in the future. Same with personal financial literacy but that's a hill to die on another day.
Right! same with computer literacy (but that's commonly being taught already), and "social media" literacy, and I can go on like that. World is changing, kids need to be prepared.
We're a place where coders share, stay up-to-date and grow their careers.
We strive for transparency and don't collect excess data.