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Open source tools crucial for government: IT expert

IANS  |  Thiruvananthapuram 

Open Source tools for data science domains such as data mining, analytics and big data, previously used in the Information Technology (IT) industry, are increasingly becoming important for governments across the world, said Graham Williams, a data scientist at Togaware and the Australia Taxation office.

He said this at the three-day workshop on "Data Mining & Analytics with R", organised by the International Centre for Free and Open Source Software (ICFOSS), that began here on Tuesday.

"The global data science market is projected to be worth $320 billion by 2020. Further, according to McKinsey, there will be a shortage of over 180,000 data scientists in the US by 2018, reflecting the higher growth rate of the sector," said Williams.

"Across the world, as computerization is picking up in governments, enormous volumes of data are generated. Open source data science tools like R are of immense use in this context, given their significance, low-cost, rapid adoption of new technology, vibrant communities and license free regimes. The Australian government uses R for data mining at the Australian tax office, Immigration and Border Control and Health and Human Services," Williams added.

R is the most widely used data mining and analytics tool globally for statistics and data science. Besides, its used in different disciplines such as retail, financial services, health research, weather modelling, astronomy, psychology and social sciences.

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First Published: Wed, May 06 2015. 13:08 IST