Nina Zumel

Nina Zumel, Ph.D.


I am a Principal Consultant with Win-Vector LLC, a data science consulting firm based in San Francisco. Before Win-Vector, I was the co-founder and owner of an SBIR company where we conducted research and specialty software development for defense and emergency response applications. My technical interests include data science, statistics, statistical learning, and data visualization. I am also interested (at a layperson’s level) in cognitive science, psychology, and linguistics.

I am the co-author with John Mount of Practical Data Science with R. This book presents the process and principles of data science from a practitioner’s perspective, and complements existing texts on machine learning, statistics, big data, and R.

One of my motivations for writing this book is what I see as the gap between basic research and technical practice. Too many mathematical research papers can only be read by other specialists – people who could have conducted the research, and hence written the paper, themselves. If the ideas and theories generated from basic research are to have enduring value, they have to be accessible to researchers and practitioners in other areas, who may have new applications for these theories. In writing Practical Data Science with R — and in all my technical writing — I try to synthesize relevant ideas and theories from the statistics, computer science, and other research communities so that they are understandable by technical but non-specialist readers who want to apply these ideas in their own field.

When I’m not working, I write and dance.