Hello, Habr! Sitting in self-isolation is a little sad, although our work did not stop. It works well from home: cookies, a cat and unlimited access to the refrigerator are always at hand. But still, sometimes a longing for the good old days.
You may ask, what can the Data Scientist really yearn for? What are the good old days? Does anyone miss opening space and sticking it in the monitor from 10 to 19?
Wait a minute, far from everywhere and not always Data Science – these are statistics, queries, R, Python, MapReduce and walks to lunch and back. Our experts have something to tell about life before quarantine.
Native open spaces
Imagine, you just came to the company, worked for just two weeks, and now – a fascinating adventure, not like the boring Thai beaches or German castles. Mysterious Karelia, the land of a thousand lakes and wildlife. A few hours from St. Petersburg to Petrozavodsk, and then a little more.
If you don’t like comfortable railway lines, and you prefer independent driving behind the wheel, your trip immediately goes to a new level. Because you are waiting for the local “death track”, which is ruled by severe truckers. But this type of entertainment is only for fans of extreme business trips.
A welcoming hotel awaits you on site, unchanged from the time of the Soviet Union, generously decorated with stuffed wolves and bears. If you get here in winter, it will be frosty. This is still the north. You will find yourself in a warmer time of the year – you can admire the lakes, waterfalls and local attractions. In Karelia there is always something to see. The truth is beautiful here.
You won’t get bored at the workplace either. Firstly, on such business trips, our employees are always acquainted with the production. Let’s say a Data Scientist needs to build a model that will predict a web break and the appearance of scrap in the pulp and paper industry. The specialist goes to the workshop where all this gigantic machinery works, gets acquainted with the processes, with the production cycle, communicates with technologists.
According to first-hand testimonies, it is one thing to read documents and reports, and quite another to see everything with your own eyes and receive detailed explanations from a person who is familiar with all the subtleties. This gives a deep immersion in the data, an understanding of the processes, allows you to make important changes to the project in time. Initially, the task can be formulated in one way, and on-site study shows that it needs to be set differently, then the results will be correct and the accuracy will be higher. Not everything is fixed on paper, some important things can be learned only from people who work for years every day for years.
Not only in the north date are the Scientists needed. There are business trips and more. Less than an hour by plane from Moscow – and you are there. True, there were cases that the road took a good one and a half days. First, the flight will be postponed, then it will be canceled altogether, they will give the hotel, and in the morning they will forget to pick it up. The cabin will change to a coupe, and the total travel time will be such that it would be possible to leave for Tyumen. Here it is – the romance of Data Science!
But seriously, the production here on the Voronezh River is large-scale. There is something to see. Metal smelting is always spectacular. And interesting problems are being solved: how to optimize the consumption of expensive components or supplying blanks to a rolling mill. Without close interaction with customers, without understanding how everything is arranged and actually happens, such problems cannot be solved. Therefore, Data Scientist often travels with his laptop to various interesting places!
Far distances, in which fate and the employment contract put our data processing and analysis specialists, are familiar, but are not very. For example, Hanoi is the capital of Vietnam. Subequatorial metropolis with ancient history. A place quite exotic by standard standards, to which it takes about 8-9 hours to fly. The Confucian Temple of Literature, numerous pagodas, a beautiful lake, the Hanoi Citadel and the marble mausoleum of Ho Chi Minh are very colorful and unusual.
Less exotic locations in which our specialists work are London, Milan, Madrid, Frankfurt. Major cities in Europe that have something to see. Time to visit the most famous attractions is usually located. And colleagues from the customer’s side are always ready to suggest which establishments are worth visiting, and what is interesting happens in the city.
As the guys themselves say, on such a business trip you can see a piece of another country not only through the eyes of a foreigner, but also find out what is known only to local residents. For the customer’s team, our employee is not a tourist, but rather a colleague. And with a colleague, you can look into your favorite cafe and show the sights that are not found in standard guidebooks.
So in addition to immersion in work, you can immerse yourself in the atmosphere of another country, another city. Go to places where an ordinary tourist does not wander. And also such trips are a great way to upgrade your language skills. Communication with foreign customers is in English. Correspondence, negotiations, everyday interaction – a great way to practice in a “live” language.
Without mentioning the conferences, our story would be incomplete. Geography is quite expected. These are mainly cities where the largest IT and digital events are traditionally held: Barcelona, Amsterdam, London. Sometimes there are trips to another continent, for example, to Canadian Vancouver.
At conferences, the team presents projects and solutions, communicates with potential customers. Most often, there is more free time on such trips than on business trips to the customer.
Now, of course, we can only recall these trips. All work is done remotely. And you know, this forced comparison allows us to draw certain conclusions. Perhaps some of our readers thought that Data Scientist was a purely office work. But now we see very clearly how important business trips to the customer’s territory are. Dialogue with manufacturers and technologists, with people who are directly responsible for specific processes. They have real practical knowledge that you will not find in the documentation. And, as experience shows, they are almost always tuned to cooperation, they often do much more than could be expected.
Therefore, if you want to communicate with interesting people, travel to different cities and countries – after quarantine, of course! – waiting for you in our team Data Science!