Blog Archives

R is for Archaeology: A report on the 2017 Society of American Archaeology meeting

April 14, 2017
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R is for Archaeology: A report on the 2017 Society of American Archaeology meeting

by (https://twitter.com/benmarwick/), Associate Professor of Archaeology, University of Washington and Senior Research Scientist, University of Wollongong The (http://www.saa.org/) is one of the largest professional organisations for archaeologists in the world, and just concluded its annual meeting in Vancouver, BC at the end of March. The R language has been a part of this meeting...

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Massively-parallel computations on Azure clusters with R, made easy with doAzureParallel

March 29, 2017
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Massively-parallel computations on Azure clusters with R, made easy with doAzureParallel

by JS Tan (Program Manager, Microsoft) For users of the R language, scaling up their work to take advantage of cloud-based computing has generally been a complex undertaking. We are therefore excited to announce doAzureParallel, a lightweight R package built on Azure Batch that allows you to easily use Azure’s flexible compute resources right from your R session. The...

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Running your R code on Azure with mrsdeploy

March 22, 2017
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Running your R code on Azure with mrsdeploy

by John-Mark Agosta, data scientist manager at Microsoft Let’s say you’ve built a model in R that is larger than you can conveniently run locally, and you want to take advantage of Azure’s resources simply to run it on a larger machine. This blog explains how to provision and run an Azure virtual machine (VM) for this, using the...

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AUC Meets the Wilcoxon-Mann-Whitney U-Statistic

March 15, 2017
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AUC Meets the Wilcoxon-Mann-Whitney U-Statistic

by Bob Horton, Senior Data Scientist, Microsoft The area under an ROC curve (AUC) is commonly used in machine learning to summarize the performance of a predictive model with a single value. But you might be surprised to learn that the AUC is directly connected to the Mann-Whitney U-Statistic, which is commonly used in a robust, non-parametric alternative to...

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Employee Retention with R Based Data Science Accelerator

March 9, 2017
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Employee Retention with R Based Data Science Accelerator

by Le Zhang (Data Scientist, Microsoft) and Graham Williams (Director of Data Science, Microsoft) Employee retention has been and will continue to be one of the biggest challenges of a company. While classical tactics such as promotion, competitive perks, etc. are practiced as ways to retain employees, it is now a hot trend to rely on machine learning technology...

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The Flexibility of Remote and Local R Workspaces

January 4, 2017
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The Flexibility of Remote and Local R Workspaces

by Sean Wells, Senior Software Engineer, Microsoft The mrsdeploy R package facilitates Remote Execution and Web Service interactions from your local R IDE command line against a remote Microsoft R Server instance. Both core features can be used independently of one another or combined to support different convenient workflows. These different workflows composed together can produce some creative R...

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Parallelizing Data Analytics on Azure with the R Interface Tool

December 27, 2016
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Parallelizing Data Analytics on Azure with the R Interface Tool

by Le Zhang (Data Scientist, Microsoft) and Graham Williams (Director of Data Science, Microsoft) In data science, to develop a model with optimal performance, exploratory experiments on different sets of hyper-parameters are often performed. Preliminary analyses on smaller data can be performed on a single machine, while the experimental one on large-scale data by sweeping multi-sets of parameters can...

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Using R to Gain Insights into the Emotional Journeys in War and Peace

December 1, 2016
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Using R to Gain Insights into the Emotional Journeys in War and Peace

by Wee Hyong Tok, Senior Data Scientist Manager at Microsoft How do you read a novel in record time, and gain insights into the emotional journey of main characters, as they go through various trials and tribulations, as an exciting story unfolds from chapter to chapter? I remembered my experiences when I start reading a novel, and I get...

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Calculating AUC: the area under a ROC Curve

November 22, 2016
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Calculating AUC: the area under a ROC Curve

by Bob Horton, Microsoft Senior Data Scientist Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) curves are a popular way to visualize the tradeoffs between sensitivitiy and specificity in a binary classifier. In an earlier post, I described a simple “turtle’s eye view” of these plots: a classifier is used to sort cases in order from most to least likely to be positive,...

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SAS to R Migration for Financial Data: Lessons and Examples

November 14, 2016
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SAS to R Migration for Financial Data: Lessons and Examples

by Lixun Zhang (Data Scientist), Ye Xing (Senior Data Scientist) and Tao Wu (Principal Data Scientist Manager), all at Microsoft Editor's Note: To learn more about migrating from SAS to R, there will be a live webinar presented by Lixun and Ye tomorrow (Tuesday, November 15). Register to attend the webinar here. R has been gaining in popularity among...

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