Apologies for the late afternoon barrage of emails, but I wanted to provide some brief context as to why R meetup has changed name, and what it means for the group.
There is no doubt that R is a tremendously powerful language for manipulating and analyzing data of all kinds. But for a long time, I have felt that by only focusing on work related to this one niche language we were missing a large portion of activity in the greater statistical computing community. As such, I have wanted to increase the breadth of topics we covered in our group. That being said, I also did not want to go so far as to include the closed-source commercial statistical computing platforms, and open the group up to sales pitches and focus groups.
In an effort to compromise these two motives---in my benevolent dictatorial capacity---have decided to rename the meetup the New York Open Statistical Programming Meetup. As the name implies, we will now focus on all open-source statistical computing languages, platforms, frameworks, etc. Our first speaker after the change, Wes McKinney, is a perfect example of an outstanding member of the statistical computing community who we might have otherwise overlooked if we only focused on getting speakers related to R.
I hope you share my excitement for this new direction. Moreover, if you have some open statistical computing project that you have been working on, but not been able to share because you felt it was outside of our focus, let me know.
I look forward to seeing everyone is September!