Some R User Group Highlights for November 2014

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by Joseph Rickert

November was an active and creative month for R user groups with over 50 events listed on the Revolution Analytics' Community Calendar. Here are some highlights that can be found by visiting the websites of a few of the groups that post and share presentations.

James Thomson was one of the presenters at the November 25th London meeting. James demonstrated the R2d3 package that he is working on with his collaborator Simon@Coppelia. This is work in progress motivated by a desire “to create an end to end process for converting R objects into D3 visualisations”. The results so far show great promise. R2d3 is on Github.


On the 20th of the month, Dublin R had a good look at Julia. If you are curious, there are links to everything you need to get started with Julia from the group's meeting page.

On the 14th of the month, Ignatio Martinez showed the UVa R Users Group how to use Slidify and Shiny to create dynamic, interactive documents. Ignatio's markdown notes for his presentation are available here. Be sure to check out the links at the bottom of the notes for additional resources like this rCharts demo from Ramnath Vaidyanathan.

The LA R users group met on the 11th for a full evening that included Szilard Pafka's presentation on some data.table / dplyr benchmarks and a talk by Ajay Gopal on using R in production.

On November 4th, Dennis Murphy presented an Introduction to ggplot2 to the Las Vegas R Users Group. Here also, the references point to some real gems like the 2012 short course on ggplot2 from Josef Fruehwald, and a rich paper by Ito and Murphy on the Application of ggplo2 to Pharmacometric Graphics which provides a very compact guide to ggplot2. The following figure from the paper very nicely compares ggplo2, lattice and base R graphics while showing the strengths of each plotting system. All three of these plots look good to me.


November was also a big month for data.table presentations, with Matt Dowle making user group visits from San Francisco to Budapest. Although no slides are available from either of these meetings, there are plenty of articles and presentations on Matt's Github page. I particularly like the analysis by Markus Gesmann from the Köln R User Group on Visualising the seasonality of Atlantic windstorms.

Finally, a new user group started in Chengdu, China on November 25th. Good luck Chengdu R!

If you are a user group organizer and would like to highlight a presentation from one of your recent events please let us know.

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