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March Meeting at PAW: A Brief Tour of An Information Environment

Our Meeting will be hosted at the Predictive Analytics World (PAW) conference and will be preceded by a reception which BARUG members are welcome to attend.

NOTE: You do not need to be registered with the PAW conference to attend. All welcome.

Update: The program has been expanded with a short talk on Sweave from special guest Max Kuhn. See update below.

There will be three speakers for this meeting. David Smith, Vice President of Marketing for Revolution Analytics, relentless R Blogger, co-author (with Bill Venables) of the tutorial manual An Introduction to R and long-time R user will provide a brief introduction to the R language.

Special guest Max Kuhn from Pfizer will then give a short talk, "A Tour of Sweave".

Our featured speaker will be Byron Ellis from AdBrite, who will give some practical advice on using R in a modern information environment.


6:10 - 7:30: Reception in Salon 8 (hosted by Predictive Analytics World, BARUG members welcome)
Snacks and drinks will be served.

[Move to Golden Gadte B meeting room for BARUG meeting]

7:30 - 7:40: Introduction & announcements

7:40 - 7:50: Introduction to R, David Smith, Revolution Analytics

7:50 - 8:10: Max Kuhn, Director of Nonclinical Statistics at Pfizer Global R&D

     A Tour of Sweave

8:10 - 8:55: Byron Ellis, Director of Analytics at adBrite, Inc 

     A Few Of My Favorite Things: A Brief Tour of An Information Environment

8:55 - 9:10: Q&A

9:10: Close (anyone for drinks?)

AbstractA Few Of My Favorite Things: A Brief Tour of An Information Environment

The R environment cultivates a spirit of expressive and flexible statistical analysis and data manipulation. The modern data environment, however, often presents obstacles that make it difficult to maintain these qualities. In this talk, I'll show how I use R with some of my favorite tools: node.js and MongoDB, to quickly build analytics systems that range from large scale interactive dashboards and ambient data displays to predictive models. Within the context of a hypothetical modeling system that has R at its core and integrates into a larger data environment, I’ll demonstrate how to do exploratory prototyping and share exploratory data analyses. 

About Byron Ellis:

Byron is Director of Analytics at adBrite, Inc. in San Francisco CA. He earned a PhD in Statistics from Harvard University with the dissertation “Inference on Bayesian Networks” in 2006. In addition to Bayesian network structure learning, Byron’s research interests include statistical computing and the implementation of statistical software, data mining and the visualization of large, complex data sets. Byron has been involved with the Bioconductor Project as a core member and contributor to the Flow Cytometry packages, and has had a long interest in interfaces to the R language, including an early Objective-C interface called Mojave and a Mathematica-style interface to R called StatPaper.


Abstract: A Tour of Sweave

Sweave is a tool for reproducible research in R that allows the user to embed R code into their documents. When these documents are processed by R, the code is executed and the resulting output (eg. Figures, tables etc) are inserted into the document. This talk gives a brief overview of Sweave, anda taste of it’s capabilities/extensions.

About Max Kuhn Max Kuhn is a Director of Nonclinical Statistics at Pfizer Global R&D in Connecticut. He has been applying models in the pharmaceutical and diagnostic industries for over 15 years. He is a leading R developer/author of seven R packages, including the caret package that provides a simple and consistent interface to over 100 predictive models available in R. Dr. Kuhn has taught courses on modeling within Pfizer and externally (including a recent class for the India Ministry of Information Technology) and is currently writing a book on applied machine learning.



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  • Dani U.

    Great to meet the R pals. All the talks were very inspiring, but Max Kuhn and his talk on Sweave was just great - made me get out of inertia and make a wider use of it! Thanks Max.

    March 15, 2011

  • Alan M.

    Really wonderful to participate in the PAW reception, tour the Exhibit Hall and have the meeting at the Marriott.

    March 15, 2011

  • Robert M. Horton, P.

    Got us into one night of PAW for free ("free" as in "free beer"!) Three good, information dense talks.

    March 15, 2011

  • Dick T.

    I liked the Sweave presentation, the last presentation was a classical example of how not to do it.

    March 15, 2011

  • Matt D.

    I liked the second talk; the last one was a bit too convoluted and confusing

    March 15, 2011

  • Byron E.

    Respectfully, Dick, the wrong way to do what exactly? I was showing y'all a couple of tools I like to wire together with R and a quick example of how I wire some of those things together. Is there a difference between the ad hoc work (the stuff I showed you) and an automated production system? Absolutely, but the difference is mostly about satisfying operational requirements you didn't know you had until you built the ad hoc prototype. Nothing sucks more than getting 8 months into a project and discovering that it's not actually useful to anyone.

    March 15, 2011

  • David S.

    We've added special guest speaker Max Kuhn to the agenda!

    March 11, 2011

  • Norm M.

    Excellent, David, I can turn off my alarm clock now. :-)

    February 17, 2011

  • David S.

    Thanks Norm, fixed now :)

    February 17, 2011

  • Norm M.

    Is that maybe 7:30 p.m. rather than a.m.? :-)

    February 16, 2011

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