Data Science Competitions For Startups & SMBs

Ready to harness the awesome benefits of data science, but think they’re outside your reach? We put the power of these technologies to work for companies that, until now, were locked out due to high costs and resource requirements.

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What is a data science competition?

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Problem

Most start-ups and SMBs do not have the talent or resources needed to experiment with sophisticated data science or machine learning algorithms to find innovative solutions to their business problems

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Solution

Companies of all sizes and budgets are able to launch a time-bound competition with a budget-friendly cash prize, engaging hundreds of data scientists in our global community.

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Result

Upon conclusion, you will receive the winning algorithm/machine learning model, as determined by our testing tools. You will have exclusive rights to its use for your business.

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How we rethink competitions

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Until now, most data science competition platforms were solely focused on large corporations, effectively alienating millions of SMBs and start-ups, many of whom stand to greatly benefit from them... After all, sponsoring a competition with a $50,000 (or a $1 million) prize is not exactly in every company’s budget. Guided by our mission to democratize data science, we decided to rethink the way competitions are structured. By making data science competitions significantly more affordable, we aim to unleash a tidal wave of data science and AI activity that greatly benefits businesses of all sizes and budgets all over the globe.

If it’s your first competition, don’t worry - we’ll work with you to identify the perfect mix of ingredients to make the most of your investment. Our customers can sponsor competitions with prize values starting as low as $499 for shorter-duration contests for problems that won’t take as long to solve. We offer a choice of competition durations, complexity, and other factors.

Until now, most data science competition platforms have been trying to attract very senior teams by offering massive cash prizes. Not surprisingly, this model favors a tiny fraction of participants, while minimizing everyone else’s chances of winning. This is despite the fact that many of the losing teams also feature very talented, experienced data scientists, whose submission was just marginally below the winning result. At DataSource, we strive to democratize competitions for both the sponsors and competitors. By catering to smaller clients with more modest budgets, our model results in giving our competitors a much more realistic chance to win cash, while they get the benefit of sharpening their data science skills, adding to their resumes, and knowing that they contributed to the success of great startups and SMBs who are primed to disrupt entire industries with their innovations.

Hosting a Competition

We realize that for many of our first-time clients, sponsoring a data science competition may seem lilke a complicated affair. Fear not! We are here to ensure that you enjoy a smooth and rewarding experience every step of the way. First, let’s outline the typical competition sponsorship process.

  1. 01 - Identify a challenge
    Let’s begin with your goal in mind. What is the most pressing business challenge that we can solve with data science or AI? We’ll work with you to understand your needs, timing, budget, and other key factors to define the appropriate challenge
  2. 02 - Gathering data sets
    Next, let’s determine the data sets our experts will require to solve your problem. The data may be sourced from your business operations, as well as plentiful third party resources, many of which are available for free.
  3. 03 - Publishing competition
    We’re now ready to publish the competition, which incluldes the problem description, relevant data sets, deadline, and the prize value - all of which are posted on our platform at www.datasource.ai
  4. 04 - Competing to solve your challenge
    Our extensive community of data scientists download and analyze the data sets, build features (using machine learning), and submit their best solutions.
  5. 05 - Scoring solutions
    We automatically score the models within our platform against a private data set based on the accuracy they achieve.
  6. 06 - Integrating your solution
    You will receive the winning ML model, which you can immediately implement in your business. Depending on your needs, we will help you establish an API to access our platform, so you can start to use the winning solution in real time.
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Our Platform

We have a platform capable of hosting competitions, uploading files, evaluating them and ranking the best results in the competition. You will also be able to know the rankings of all competitors at any time throughout the competition.

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Sponsor options

No two data science problems are the same. Your business faces unique challenges, driven by your business strategy and market conditions. You will have great flexibility for designing an ideal combination of competition options to optimize your ability to meet your goals and objectives. If you are new to data science competitions, we will work with you to understand your needs, and recommend the optimal set of options, so you get the highest return on your investments. Below are examples of the more common sets of options to help you get started

Basic
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Enterprise
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Problem Complexity Low-level complexity Mid-level complexity High-level complexity
Setup Self-setup Our team will support you Our team will support you
Data sets You must have the dataset ready Our team will support you Our team will support you
Prize Winners Prize distribution Prize awarded to the first-place contestant Prize awarded to the top two contestants Prize awarded to the top three contestants
Typical duration Competition length 1 weekend - 1 week 1-8 weeks 2-6 months
Solution What you get Top 1 competitors' algorithms Top 2 competitors' algorithms Top 3 competitors' algorithms
Access to the all the participants Access to our entire talent pool
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Intellectual Property Code Intellectual Property
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Resumes Access to competitors' Resumes
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API Integration Solution integration via API
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Featured Featured space on the platform
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Not sure which plan is right for you? Follow this tool

Frequently Asked Questions

The level of complexity is defined by a number of factors. We begin by understanding the difficulty and scope of your business problem. We then evaluate the technical components, such as availability of data and type of algorithm to be used. We realize that this can be an area of confusion, especially for our first-time customers. Thankfully our in-house experts have developed a problem framing tool , which can examine your input, and quickly recommend the right sponsorship plan for you.

Easy! We developed a problem framing tool that helps you understand how we calculate the complexity of the competition. Of course, if you are not clear about it, we’re here to help you with the whole process.

You should start by defining a clear business goal that you’re trying to reach, and how you will apply the resulting algorithm. To launch a competition, you will need to specify the details for our competitors. This includes the problem you’re trying to solve, the data you want them to use for analytics and model training, and the metrics you wish to use to select the winner. We are here to help you with each component, and when appropriate, we will work with third-party experts to ensure that you get the maximum value from each competition.

To launch a competition, we should have the data related to the problem you’re trying to solve. It should be clean and organized - so that the participants can focus on building an effective model around it. If you are not clear about this step, we can help, and if necessary, work with third-party experts to get it done.

Winners are selected by our platform, according to the metrics defined before the competition. The platform features an automatic evaluator that rank orders all the submitted solutions in real time. Competitors normally submit a considerable amount of models during each competition as they measure, iterate, and arrive at the optimal solution. At the competition close, the top ranked competitors submit their complete models, so we can objectively evaluate them and announce the ultimate winner.

We know that some machine learning problems are less complex than others. We also recognize that your business needs solutions as soon as possible. Therefore, when possible, we will recommend a faster turn-around, so you can get the results and put them to work for your business as soon as possible - all without compromising the quality of our product. By running short-duration competitions for lower-complexity problems, we incentivize our competitors for greater motivation and focus on solving your problem. In turn, our experts appreciate the added opportunity to earn more prize money and to participate in more competitions. Of course, for problems of greater complexity, we will work with you to recommend the optimal balance between prize value, duration, and other variables to meet your needs.

Once the winner is announced, we award the prize to the winning competitor(s), and you will receive the top-ranked machine learning(ML) model. The ML model is the algorithm that will allow you to solve the problem you specified at the beginning of the competition. We will also transfer all the intellectual property rights to you, so your company will be the only entity licensed to use this solution. The algorithm itself will be delivered in a Jupyter Notebook and/or Python file, each containing the necessary code for its implementation in your business infrastructure.

This is where you get the ultimate benefit of your competition. Once you receive the winning algorithm, you can implement it in your internal systems, or deploy it immediately by using our API. If you’re not clear on this step, we can walk you through the process. If needed, we will work with third-party experts to ensure a smooth hand-over and implementation.

Our fees are determined by several factors - such as the complexity of your problem, availability and readiness of your data, and the amount of assistance you will need to integrate the winning algorithm into your business operations. We realize that many of our customers are operating on a tight budget, and making AI accessible to them is at the core of our business philosophy. We’d love to talk to you and discuss the details!

Yes - you will receive the CV/Resume of the top-ranked competitor(s)

At the moment we do not have the option of direct contact between the sponsor and the participants. If you have any questions about the competition, please write to us. Also if you want to contact them directly with a potential job offer please write to us at: [email protected]

Our talent pool consists of more than 1,500 data science experts, ranging from mathematicians, statisticians, programmers to data scientists, with all kinds of backgrounds: from self-taught to PhDs.

Still have questions? Let's talk! Email us at: [email protected]

Download Whitepaper

How to Apply Data Science to SMBs & Startups? A Practical Guide

Data science has become popular, and many business people and technical professionals have an increasing interest in understanding data science and applying it to solve their problems.

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Meet our team

Our mission is to democratize data science and AI, enabling millions of companies worldwide to use them to make data-driven decisions and solve their toughest business challenges

Dimitry
Dimitry Kushelevsky
CEO / Co-founder
Daniel Morales
Daniel Morales
CTO / Co-founder

Experienced CEO, high tech entrepreneur and IT professional. Passionate about building successful companies whose innovations stand to benefit millions of people around the globe.

Data geek, software developer, new technologies enthusiast, specialized in data science and machine learning. Data science mentor and teacher. Enjoys predicting the future, as long as the dataset allows him to do so 😀.

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