CHI 2021
Conference paper

Autods: Towards human-centered automation of data science

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Data science (DS) projects often follow a lifecycle that consists of laborious tasks for data scientists and domain experts (e.g., data exploration, model training, etc.). Only till recently, machine learning(ML) researchers have developed promising automation techniques to aid data workers in these tasks. This paper introduces AutoDS, an automated machine learning (AutoML) system that aims to leverage the latest ML automation techniques to support data science projects. Data workers only need to upload their dataset, then the system can automatically suggest ML confgurations, preprocess data, select algorithm, and train the model. These suggestions are presented to the user via a web-based graphical user interface and a notebook-based programming user interface. Our goal is to offer a systematic investigation of user interaction and perceptions of using an AutoDS system in solving a data science task. We studied AutoDS with 30 professional data scientists, where one group used AutoDS, and the other did not, to complete a data science project. As expected, AutoDS improves productivity; Yet surprisingly, we fnd that the models produced by the AutoDS group have higher quality and less errors, but lower human confdence scores. We refect on the fndings by presenting design implications for incorporating automation techniques into human work in the data science lifecycle.


06 May 2021


CHI 2021