Articles by R on mages' blog

New R package to access World Bank data

April 26, 2016 | R on mages' blog

Staying on top of new CRAN packages is quite a challenge nowadays. However, thanks to Dirk’s CRANberries service I occasionally spot a new gem, such as wbstats, which appeared on CRAN last week. Similarly to the WDI package, wbstats offers an interface to the World Bank database. With the ... [Read more...]

Notes from 2nd Bayesian Mixer Meetup

April 19, 2016 | R on mages' blog

Last Friday the 2nd Bayesian Mixer Meetup (@BayesianMixer) took place at Cass Business School, thanks to Pietro Millossovich and Andreas Tsanakas, who helped to organise the event. Bayesian Mixer at Cass First up was Davide De March talking about the c... [Read more...]

Bayesian Mixer on Meetup

February 16, 2016 | R on mages' blog

We had our first successful Bayesian Mixer Meetup last Friday night at the Artillery Arms! We expected about 15 - 20 people to turn up, when we booked the function room overlooking Bunhill Cemetery and Bayes’ grave. Now, looking at the photos taken during the evening, it seems that our prior believe ... [Read more...]

Using SVG graphics in blog posts

February 9, 2016 | R on mages' blog

My traditional work flow for embedding R graphics into a blog post has been via a PNG files that I upload online. However, when I created a ‘simple’ graphic with only basic curves and triangles for a recent post, I noticed that the PNG output didn’t look as crisp ... [Read more...]

First Bayesian Mixer Meeting in London

February 2, 2016 | R on mages' blog

There is a nice pub between Bunhill Fields and the Royal Statistical Society in London: The Artillery Arms. Clearly, the perfect place to bring people together to talk about Bayesian Statistics. Well, that’s what Jon Sedar (@jonsedar, and I thought. Source:, ... [Read more...]

Flowing triangles

January 25, 2016 | R on mages' blog

I have admired the work of the artist Bridget Riley for a long time. She is now in her eighties, but as it seems still very creative and productive. Some of her recent work combines simple triangles in fascinating compositions. The longer I look at the... [Read more...]

Formatting table output in R

January 19, 2016 | R on mages' blog

Formatting data for output in a table can be a bit of a pain in R. The package formattable by Kun Ren and Kenton Russell provides some intuitive functions to create good looking tables for the R console or HTML quickly. The package home page demonstrat... [Read more...]

Notes from Warsaw R meetup

December 1, 2015 | R on mages' blog

I had the great pleasure time to attend the Warsaw R meetup last Thursday. The organisers Olga Mierzwa and Przemyslaw Biecek had put together an event with a focus on R in Insurance (btw, there is a conference with the same name), discussing examples of pricing and reserving in general ... [Read more...]

Hierarchical Loss Reserving with Stan

November 10, 2015 | R on mages' blog

I continue with the growth curve model for loss reserving from last week’s post. Today, following the ideas of James Guszcza [2] I will add an hierarchical component to the model, by treating the ultimate loss cost of an accident year as a random effect. Initially, I will use the ... [Read more...]

Non-linear growth curves with Stan

October 27, 2015 | R on mages' blog

I suppose the go to tool for fitting non-linear models in R is nls of the stats package. In this post I will show an alternative approach with Stan/RStan, as illustrated in the example, Dugongs: “nonlinear growth curve”, that is part of Stan’s documentation. The original example itself ... [Read more...]

R in Insurance 2016

October 6, 2015 | R on mages' blog

Following the successful 3rd R in Insurance conference in Amsterdam this year, we will return to London next year. We will be back at Cass Business School, 11 July 2016. The event will focus again on the use of R in insurance, bringing together experts... [Read more...]
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