While there is much hype and confusion around "data science" and the hot new professional "data scientist", there appears to be a growing number of articles and blogs asserting a data scientist bubble and the coming death of data science.
But dear reader, not to worry, because new data tech will replace the data scientist. These claims are usually made by denizens of tech firms with interest in selling new tech and data engineers jealous of real professional data scientists (not fake data scientists) who create meaning and value from data for strategic, tactical and operational advantage - and thus earn higher status and more money. Data engineers and IT departments are understandably furious that organization leaders consider them a burdensome "cost" yet data scientists are perceived as "revenue generators" creating value and real advantage (in reality data engineers and data scientists need each other and are part of a team).
To be fair, data engineers and IT shops lost credibility with leaders when they bought the "big data" hype and wasted time and money on dubious and immature new data tech. When the result was little, if any, value from the data, the blame game followed and leaders looked to the new profession of data science in attempt to obtain value. However, many folks confuse real data scientists with garden variety data and business analysts - some of whom are starting to call themselves data scientists thus confusing the market. As a result, there may indeed be a fake data scientist bubble, while real professional data scientists are in short supply.
While data tech is very important and data engineers and data analysts a critical part of the data science team, at this time - and for the foreseeable future - tech cannot replace highly educated and trained data scientists who have deep analytical skills, scientific training to detect signal from noise and avoid deadly data traps that create an illusion of reality, and the ability to find valuable, actionable insights. If something appears too good to be true, it usually is too good to be true. It would be wonderful if new data tech could replace the professional practice of data science. The builder of such tech would add huge value and make a massive fortune. Unfortunately, like premature claims of real artificial intelligence (not fake AI like brute force calculations), such tech has not yet (knowingly) been invented (may be reality in future). While sophisticated machine learning algorithms can add significant value - they are not artificial intelligence (yet) and still require data scientists to design, execute, constantly modify and interpret meaning. Beware of tech firms selling you data tech with fantastic claims of finding meaning in data and creating competitive advantage.