Blog Archives

Microsoft R Open 3.2.4 now available

April 22, 2016
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Microsoft R Open 3.2.4 now available

M icrosoft R Open 3.2.4, Microsoft's enhanced distribution of R, is now available for download from mran.microsoft.com. This update is based on R 3.2.4-revised, and includes several improvements and some minor bug fixes from the R Core Group. Improvements include long-vector support for the smooth function, a new stringsAsFactors options when using rbind with data frames, and better rounding...

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Pride and Prejudice and Z-scores

April 20, 2016
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Pride and Prejudice and Z-scores

You might think literary criticism is no place for statistical analysis, but given digital versions of the text you can, for example, use sentiment analysis to infer the dramatic arc of an Oscar Wilde novel. Now you can apply similar techniques to the works of Jane Austen thanks to Julia Silge's R package janeaustenr (available on CRAN). The package...

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Exploring NYC Taxi Data with Microsoft R Server and HDInsight

April 19, 2016
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Exploring NYC Taxi Data with Microsoft R Server and HDInsight

As I mentioned yesterday, Microsoft R Server now available for HDInsight, which means that you can now run R code (including the big-data algorithms of Microsoft R Server) on a managed, cloud-based Hadoop instance. Debraj GuhaThakurta, Senior Data Scientist, and Shauheen Zahirazami, Senior Machine Learning Engineer at Microsoft, demonstrate some of these capabilities in their analysis of 170M taxi...

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A scalable data science platform with Microsoft R Server and Spark

April 18, 2016
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If you want to train a statistical model on very large amounts of data, you'll need three things: a storage platform capable of holding all of the training data, a computational platform capable of efficently performing the heavy-duty mathematical computations required, and a statistical computing language with algorithms that can take advantage of the storage and computation power. Microsoft...

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Microsoft Data Science VM now available as a Linux instance

April 13, 2016
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Microsoft Data Science VM now available as a Linux instance

Microsoft's Linux Data Science Virtual Machine is now available for use on the Azure Marketplace. Like the Windows-based instance of the Data Science VM, this pre-built system based on Linux CentOS 7.2 includes all the tools you'll need to analyze data, including Microsoft R Open, Anaconda Python, Jupyter Notebooks and a PostgreSQL database instance. It also includes a suite...

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The FBI’s aerial surveillance program, visualized with R

April 11, 2016
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The FBI’s aerial surveillance program, visualized with R

Buzzfeed's Peter Aldhous and Charles Seife broke a major news story last week: the US Federal Bureau of Investigation and Department of Homeland Security operate more than 200 small aircraft (mainly Cessnas and some helicopters) which routinely circle various sites near US cities, presumably to gather data with onboard cameras and electonic equipment. The data behind the story weren't...

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In case you missed it: March 2016 roundup

April 8, 2016
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In case you missed them, here are some articles from February of particular interest to R users. Reviews of new CRAN packages RtutoR, lavaan.shiny, dCovTS, glmmsr, GLMMRR, MultivariateRandomForest, genie, kmlShape, deepboost and rEDM. You can now create and host Jupyter notebooks based on R, for free, in Azure ML Studio. Calculating learning curves for predictive models with doParallel. An...

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AirbnB uses R to scale data science

April 5, 2016
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AirbnB uses R to scale data science

Airbnb, the property-rental marketplace that helps you find a place to stay when you're travelling, uses R to scale data science. Airbnb is a famously data-driven company, and has recently gone through a period of rapid growth. To accommodate the influx of data scientists (80% of whom are proficient in R, and 64% use R as their primary data...

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Help improve treatment for brain injuries using machine learning and R

April 4, 2016
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Help improve treatment for brain injuries using machine learning and R

The field of neuroscience -- the study of brains and the nervous system -- has taken some major leaps in recent years. Scientists can now gather real-time electrical activity from the brain during actions and thoughts, which is helping to pinpoint the exact location of brain lesions caused by strokes, and is leading to promising treatments for epilepsy and...

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Two fun plots with R

April 1, 2016
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Two fun plots with R

Data visualization with R doesn't always have to be serious. Here are a couple of fun charts created recently by R users. First, here's a minimalist rendition of the characters in The Simpsons, by an anonymous blogger: And from Alex Whan, here's a near-perfect recreation of the classic cover of the Joy Division album Unknown Pleasures, based on simulated...

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