Category Archives for Blog

A Guide to SQL Window Functions for Data Analysts

I recently learned about a (somewhat) new feature in MySQL called Window functions. From the perspective of an analyst, Window functions are fantastic: they allow you derive more information about your data without leaving the database. This reduces your need for custom statistical software such as R. Unfortunately, most of the tutorials that I read […]

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Reader Questions about Analytics Engineering

Last week I announced a new focus for my blog: codifying my thoughts around the new role of Analytics Engineering. The post led to some interesting exchanges with longtime readers. I thought that two of these questions, along with my responses, might interest a wider audience, so I am copying them here. Q1: How does […]

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Something New: Analytics Engineering

I started this blog in 2015 to serve as reference material for Choroplethr, my open source R package for mapping demographic statistics. A lot has changed since then, and I’ve decided to start using this space for something else: to codify my thoughts on the new field of Analytics Engineering. As a software engineer, there […]

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Exploring the Demographics of US Congressional Districts in R

I recently created a few datasets to facilitate analyzing the interaction between demographics and political party affiliations of US Congressional Districts. My goal was to create this graph: I added this data to Choroplethr and pushed the new version to CRAN. This post walks you through using these datasets, the analysis I did, and the […]

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Choroplethr v3.6.4 is now on CRAN (and the Future of Choroplethr)

Choroplethr v3.6.4 is now on CRAN. This is the first update to the package in two years, and was necessary because of a recent change to the tigris package, which choroplethr uses to make Census Tract maps. I also took this opportunity to add new example demographic data for Census Tracts. Quick Demo The first […]

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Using Python to Cheat at Scrabble

My New Year’s Resolution was to learn Python. After taking a few online courses, I became comfortable enough with the language to tackle a small side project. Side projects are great for learning a language because they let you “own” a project from start to finish as well as solve a problem that is of […]

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Free Training: Mastering Data Structures in R

Next week I will be delivering a free online R training. This is a new course I’ve created called Mastering Data Structures in R. This course is for you if:You are new to R, and want a rigorous introduction to R as a programming languageYou know how to analyze data in R, but want to […]

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Behind the Scenes of an R Consortium Project

Next Tuesday (September 3) I will be giving a talk at the Bay Area R User Group titled¬†Behind the Scenes of an R Consortium Project. This will be my first time speaking about my work with the R Consortium, and I encourage you to attend! Over the last few years the R Consortium has emerged […]

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Notes on Becoming an RStudio Certified Trainer

I recently became an RStudio Certified Trainer, and thought that it might interest the broader R Community to learn about this new program. For those who don’t know, RStudio has recently put together a process to independently verify that R trainers (a) are proficient with the Tidyverse and (b) know modern teaching pedagogy. Certified trainers […]

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New Resource for Learning Choroplethr

Last week I had the honor of giving a 1 hour talk about Choroplethr at a private company. When this company reached out to me about speaking there, I originally planned to give the same talk I gave at CDC two years ago. But as I reviewed the CDC talk, I realized two things: My […]

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