On Monday, April 4, the launch of the science dissemination book Una mirada a la era de los datos (A Glance at the Age of Data), by Centro de Modelamiento Matemático (CMM) researchers Jocelyn Dunstan, Alejandro Maass and Felipe Tobar, took place.
The event took place in the Eloísa Díaz hall of the Casa Central of the Universidad de Chile, organized by the Editorial Universitaria of this university.
Jorge Martínez, director of Editorial Universitaria, Héctor Ramírez, director of CMM, and Patricio Felmer, National Exact Sciences Prize 2011 and CMM researcher, who presented the book, took part in the ceremony.
Regarding the subject matter of the book, Héctor Ramírez emphasized that “it is not a subject of the future, it is a subject of the present […], it is not only a niche for scientists”.
In his presentation, Prof. Felmer praised the scope of the book, emphasizing that it is a book “made for a non-expert public, of which I feel part”, and recommending it as “a fundamental piece of the library of the informed citizen in these times”.
The authors of the book then took the floor, thanking the University and the publishing house for making the project possible, and pointing out the aspects they wanted to cover in its contents. Jocelyn Dunstan commented on the biases introduced in the capture, processing and interpretation of the data -as well as the necessary gender perspective- as issues to be further explored.
Felipe Tobar highlighted the role of the University, and its commitment and importance in the development of the country, by supporting research and dissemination of topics such as these. “Writing this book was a new experience for me, and doing it almost entirely during the pandemic was particularly challenging, which I think makes me value this experience even more. I thank my co-authors and CMM for being our second home while we wrote this book,” Tobar said. “I hope this book will reach everyone who is interested in learning –from a friendly perspective– about data science, and that it will be a gateway for those who want to continue walking the data path,” the researcher concluded.
Alejandro Maass, for his part, referred to a broader vision of the subject, reflecting that “humanity has possibly been in various “data eras” for more than 3,000 years, but today technological aspects and the development of mathematics and information technology are mixed together to make us live this era on a time scale never seen before”.
After the event, the guests were able to have a short conversation, and the 100 copies available for sale at the time were sold out.
The book seeks to introduce, in a non-technical way, the main concepts of the data era. Starting from the definition of data, its generation and collection to visualization and interpretation. It is designed for non-experts who wish to learn more about the era of data in which we live, marked by the dizzying generation of data and our increasingly frequent interaction with artificial intelligence.
The volume, which is part of the Saberes Collection, will soon be available in physical format from Editorial Universitaria and selected bookstores, as well as in digital format, as part of Universitaria Digital, through its online store.
The “Colección Saberes” is a series of books by Editorial Universitaria focused on scientific information. It seeks to inform the interested public about the main fundamentals of scientific topics that should be part of the enlightened discussion.