Thoughts on SatRday Newcastle

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Earlier this month I attended the inaugural SatRday Newcastle. This was my first time attending a SatRday event, and I had a really enjoyable day. The event was sponsored by Newcastle University, Sage, RStudio and Jumping Rivers. There were over 100 attendees from across the U.K. Most attendees were from industry, although there were also a couple of academics present. There were also lots of R-Ladies, including women from the newly formed R-Ladies Newcastle, who are launching next month. There was even a four-month-old baby - well, you’ve got to start them young!

There were lots of interesting talks during the day, but here are a couple of my personal favourites.

Noa Tamir: Data Culture in Practice.

Noa opened the day by telling stories about climate change, mozzarella and wisdom of the crowds. She taught us that “stories are sticky” and using them can be a great way to help colleagues understand, and remember statistical principles. She also highlighted the importance of trust, access and knowledge when working with data.

Joe Gallagher: Football analytics with the soccermatics package.

I don’t really follow football, but Joe’s talk on his soccermatrics package was fascinating. He’s created a tool to visualise and analyse football matches, including pitch heatmaps and individual player trajectories. Joe has a huge list of extra functionality he would like to add and is looking for collaborators. If you would like to help develop the soccermatics package, you can reach out on GitHub.

Thomas Lin Pedersen: Creative Coding for Fun and (Non)Profit.

Thomas spoke about the benefits of creative coding, and how those little fun extra projects can provide a healthy distraction from a difficult task at hand, whilst also allowing you to learn new skills. He was, however, keen to stress that having time to code for fun is a privilege and not a requirement, so don’t worry if you don’t have time!

Did you miss us?

Don’t worry if you missed SatRday Newcastle, all of the talks were recorded and we will be sharing them online shortly. We’re also pleased to announce that SatRdays Newcastle will return on 4th April 2020. Save the date!