Wednesday 16 January 2013

Computing for data analysis

I have enrolled in the course "Computing for data analysis" on Coursera, taught by Roger Peng from Johns Hopkins. Essentially you get to learn and new language, R, and play around with large data sets. What could go wrong, right?

The last 2 weeks have been pretty stressful at work. Even weekends were not spared (its a new project). Cue Coursera's weekly quizzes and assignments. I barely have time to study after work. Having just completed the second programming assignment (submitted a day late, I wish I had more time), I'm pretty spent. I hope I'll be able to complete the course successfully, but it is proving rather difficult at the moment.

Early thoughts on R - the syntax is fairly straightforward, coming from a Java background. Everything is an object, and the last statement is returned automatically (kinda like Ruby), which I don't particularly like. It seems to have some really powerful statistical functions, and I'm hoping to unleash its power on some of my own datasets.

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