Contributing to vegalite

March 02, 2017
One of my goals for 2017 is to contribute more to the R open source community. At the beginning of last year, I spent a little time helping to refactor rio. It was one of the more rewarding things I did in all of 2016. It wasn’t a ton of work, and I feel like I gained a lot of confidence in writing R packages and using S3 methods. I wrote code that R users download and use thousands of times a month.
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My confrontation with the mainstream

February 27, 2017
You can check my Goodreads profile. I love science fiction and fantasy. And I know in 2017 and everyone has already observed the dominance of “geek culture”, with the dominance of Disney properties from Marvel and now Star Wars. Hell, Suicide Squad won a goddamn Oscar. Powell's Best Selling Fiction, 2017-02-26 Powell's Best Selling Fiction, 2017-02-26 But I never felt like SFF was all that mainstream.
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Siri Won't Catch Alexa

January 14, 2017
“I just got an Amazon Echo and surprisingly, I really love it.” In one form or another, this story has repeated again and again across the internet. So while the recent headline seemed to be “Amazon’s Alexa is everywhere at CES 2017”, it really feels like this year was the Amazon Alexa year. I have an Amazon Echo. I bought around a year ago during a sale as the buzz seemed to have peaked 1.
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A Gateway Drug to purrr

December 29, 2016
A lot of the data I work with uses numeric codes rather than text to describe features of each record. For example, financial data often has a fund code that represents the account’s source of dollars and an object code that signals what is bought (e.g. salaries, benefits, supplies). This is a little like the factor data type in R, which to the frustration of many modern analysts is internally an integer that mapped to a character label (which is a level) with a fixed number of possible values.
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Introducing json.blog

December 28, 2016
I have written a lot on the internet. This isn’t a surprise, I’ve been here since the mid-90s. But the truth is, most of what I write on the internet doesn’t make me proud. It hasn’t made the world any better. It certainly hasn’t made me feel any better. Most of this terrible writing is easy to associate with me, because a long time ago, I chose to use my real name as my online identity.
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