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SatRday events have become a more and more popular format of R conference series. They are based on such values as inclusivity, affordability and are made for and by real R enthusiasts, so all values important to Appsilon. With great pleasure we decided to support a recent edition of SatRday in Cardiff (and this is not the first SatRday we’ve been on). For me, personally, it was even more important as I was a member of the local organising team.

The event started a day before Saturday November 16th with a Hackathon organized by Heather Turner and the Forwards organisation. The objective of this coding jam session was to improve functionality of the TDR R package that provides data and statistics from the Transgender Day of Remembrance website that collects information about people who suffered from violence for being transgender. Thanks to this and the previous year’s edition of the Hackathon, the package is fully functional now and you can download it from its GitHub page.

The main event started, no surprise, early morning SatRday with a fantastic keynote talk from Mine Çetinkaya-Rundel who came down from another UK capital, Edinburgh. In her talk she highlighted a collection of pedagogical considerations, tips, and tricks for designing a welcoming and inclusive curriculum for teaching (with) R.

Actually, this year’s keynotes did an amazing job as Arun Srinivasan, one of the core developers of datatable, gave us an overview of the most recent developments in the package in a spectacular live coding session.

Spectacular live R coding session

Spectacular live R coding session

All the regular and lightning talks were simply amazing this year. To mention just a few of them: Rhian Davies from Jumping Rivers covered the importance of continuous integration in R package development and convinced us that it’s not as difficult as one might think to get started. Anne Koopman from Cardiff University shared her story of how R helped her create better plots for her scientific work and also gave her her most popular tweet so far. Joseph O’Brien from Limerick presented an impressive piece of work in an analysis of Fantasy Football data made in R. I learned about a lot of new plots and some new strategies for the game 😉 In all honesty, I should’ve mentioned all of the talks from the day, as all were equally amazing. So thank you one more time to all the speakers who are part of this community. 

The event concluded with a nice social event in a local pub and then dinner with a not-so local, but still delicious pizza. We would like to thank once again all of the co-organisers and we’re proud at Appsilon that we could be a part of this event. We can’t wait for the upcoming editions.

Follow me on Twitter at @doktaox

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