Nowadays, everybody talks about data science, data-driven companies, and data scientists. If you would like to be data-driven then, you should collect, analyze and visualize data. Here comes the first hang-up: where can you get a dataset that you can use? The answer depends on for what purposes you would like to use the data. There are two main reasons why people need to analyze and visualize data: First, because of your work and second to learn.
Datasets in Work
“For next week, I need a report on our sales!” – Does this sound familiar? You could work in any field, and at least once you will find yourself in a situation when you have to make a report based on your company’s data. You can collect it yourself and analyze it, but sometimes you need data that you don’t own that you can only get from other sources. But from where? If you are using a CRM (customer relationship management) system then you can easily export your data to analyze and visualize it. You have to do the same if your company uses a business software like SAS, SAP, SPSS and soon on (you can import your MySQL database directly to AnswerMiner). If you are totally lost, then first you should ask your IT department or your administrator to help you get data that you can export. Never be afraid to ask somebody else to help you if you got stuck.
Learning Makes You Better
Have you ever decided to make a beautiful or interesting chart after seeing a great one? Of course, you have. The biggest problem is that it’s always hard to find datasets that you can use to make entertaining charts or graphs. If you have a tool but no dataset, then it can be a big challenge to learn how to analyze and visualize something that you don’t have. The good news is there are a lot of websites where you can find many types of public datasets that you can use for learning.
We have gathered some datasets from many fields such as surveys, technology, HR, gaming, cars, and the good-old Iris flower dataset. All datasets are clean and ready to analyze. After a free registration, you can use or download them for free.
Here are some other websites that you should also visit:
Data.gov is a site where you can download data from multiple US government agencies.
“The social network for data people” – this is how data.world describes itself. Besides downloading datasets, you can also upload your own and share with others.
Reddit is a social news aggregation site where you can find many links to free datasets. Additionally, you can post a request for a specific dataset that you may be looking for.
Kaggle is a data science community with many interesting datasets. It organizes competitions as well, so if you practiced enough, you could join one of them.
This site is also a good source for free datasets, but many of them are outdated. If you want to learn and explore the world of analyzing and visualizing, then using them shouldn’t be a problem.
TIP: Before downloading any dataset, always check the license.
The sites mentioned above are just the tip of the iceberg. There are many more websites where you can find public datasets. You will also find many sites where you can purchase datasets, but we suggest purchasing datasets only if you need them for work. All in all, it’s easier to find usable data than it seems at first glance. To make your data exploration faster and easier use AnswerMiner. Smart data view, automatic charts, relation maps or decision trees within the app help you to understand your data easily.