learning

Doesn’t this make you miss dplyr tho?

Doesn't this make you miss dplyr tho? — Ashir Aseesh Borah (@AshirBorah) May 2, 2020 Listen I’m as surprised as you. I’m on record in multiple places talking about how much I love dplyr. I’ve referred to it as “my favorite package” more than once, and have definitely said that you could pry it “from my cold, dead hands.” dplyr is a fantastic package for data manipulation, and has been the primary workhorse in my analytics workflow for the past few years.

There’s No Crying in Data Science

What is it like learning Python if you know R? It’s like being every single character in this scene all at once, all the time: Which is to say that the last two months have been some of the most frustrating months of my learning life - and I’m including 3.5 years in an Immunology & Infectious Disease PhD program in that calculation. Sure I’m a little frustrated with Python, and I’m kind of frustrated with the fields of machine learning (and deep learning and data science and AI), but nothing compares with how frustrated I am with how slowly I’m learning.

Reach for “good enough”

Reach for “Good Enough” Looking at my plans for this past week, I was pretty ambitious in what I thought I’d accomplish. And while I technically started what I said I would, we’ll have to use a very generous definition of the word start to make it work. Sometimes learning machine learning feels overwhelming to me - there’s so much involved! From matrix math and linear algebra and calculus to programming in python to applying everything to machine and deep learning projects.

Finding Your “Just Right” Learning Resources

A note on COVID-19 We are currently in the midst of a global pandemic, and it feels disingenuous for me not to acknowledge the context in which this learning series is being created. When faced with overwhelming circumstances, one of my go-to coping mechanisms is to spend as much time as possible learning. Burying oneself in learning doesn’t have to be your coping mechanism, and for many people I suspect that it is not.

Sid Meier’s Civilization and My Machine Learning Path

Have you ever played Civ? You start the game by choosing your historical figure, set up your gameplay, and are suddenly dropped in the middle of nowhere. Well, you’re somewhere - but everything on the map is obscured, completely shrouded in an impenetrable fog. Which in a lot of ways is what it feels like when you decide that this is it. This time you’re going to learn Data Science//Machine Learning//AI//Deep Learning//the “it” thing of the moment.

Programming parallels: a lesson in empathy

##Introduction In the midst of a three week hiatus from work I’ve found myself filling my time with long-forgotten hobbies: art, baking, design, and crafting. These have been my long-neglected creative outlets, and it’s been a wonderful experience getting back into them. Through a series of wonderings I found myself deciding that I could absolutely, 100% crochet a blanket. I had crocheted a bit as a kid, having learned enough to make a mountain of dishcloths.

Learning to Learn: metacognition and the coalesce() function

The challenge One skill that all great educators possess is the ability to ask questions. Asking the right questions at the right time of the learners in your classroom can facilitate understanding, uncover misconceptions, and indicate whether or not learners have mastered the material. However, when you’re learning on your own you have to simultaneously fill the roles of both learner and educator, and not only know both how and when to ask yourself questions, but also answer your questions, evaluate your answers, and redirect your learning path as you progress.

TIL: Last observation carried forward (LOCF) using fill()

The problem I’ve been working with preliminary student State of Texas Assessments of Academic Readiness (STAAR) data pulled from the Data Interaction portal. The data I’m interested in includes proficiency levels for every subject for every individual school, disaggregated by all available demographic splits. Because downloading all of the data will likely require building a webcrawler, I’ve started this project by working with a small subset of 20 Elementary and Middle Schools in the Dallas Independent School District (DISD) for the 2018 school year.

R4DS (v1 & v2): A Retrospective

Introduction As all amazing opportunities in my life are wont to do, it started with a tweet: …which resulted in me spending last Friday talking data science education with some of the great folks at JHU, largely centered on work happening with the Chromebook Data Science project. It’s rare that I find myself dealing with imposter syndrome, but I did spend Thursday night eating all of my feelings of doubt and insecurity.

Learning to Learn: Process Over Product

Learning to learn can be… well, challenging I find myself on social media for the longest stretches of time when I’m just beginning a project. Social media is a fantastic distraction from getting started, because burying yourself in the seratonin hits from a Like or ❤️ is far more pleasant than staring at the sheer amount of project yet to do. It doesn’t even have to be a big project to send us into a perpetual state of procrastination.

R4DS June Challenge: Summer of Data Science 2018

We’re going on a learning adventure! This summer we’d like to challenge you to participate in the “Summer of Data Science” Twitter initiative hosted by none other than Data Science Renee! While the Summer of Data Science (SoDS) supports all languages and endeavors related to becoming a (better) data scientist, we wanted to host a space within our R4DS Online Learning Community for our community members to ask questions, provide support, and in general discuss what we’re learning within our chosen text!

R4DS May Challenge: sign up for office hours!

Introduction May is here and it’s time to get back to our roots by revisiting the R for Data Science text as well as introduce materials to help you - yes you - get comfortable with GitHub. Sure, we could do something similar to the first iteration of our online learning community and say we’re going to cover a specified amount of material each week, but instead we’re going to try something new!

GIF it, GIF it real good

We’re going to walk through the basics of posting GIFs on your blogdown website using imgur and GIPHY. Introduction Blogdown is an amazing tool for - wait for it - blogging. I recently made the jump to blogdown, and after working out all of my self-inflicted initial “OMG what happened now?!” issues, blogdown has become part of my daily workflow. I’m still playing with formatting issues (evidence below) but on the whole things are coming together nicely.

Learning to Learn

Background It took me eight years to finish my undergraduate degree, not because I took a lot of time off to volunteer or travel the world, but because I dropped out twice (twice!) due to never having learned to learn in my K-12 days. Looking at my academic performance in high school, I wasn’t the kid you would think would struggle with college. But if you scratched beneath the surface of the good grades, you’d see a student who put in very little effort beyond generally paying attention in class and completing homework assignments.

Want to work with Data? Don’t wait.

Data is everywhere, and it seems you can’t go more than 48 hours without hearing how data scientists are going to rule the world–if only we can train enough of them. The thing is, you don’t need to wait until after you get that Master’s (or PhD) in Data Science, or even until complete that online course that cost you several thousand dollars. You can start working with data now, and depending on your interests, skills, and commitment to learning, be job-ready in six months to a year.