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2019-01-02: To Be Continued

Unfortunately, due to other priorities, things did not pick up again after the summer break. So, the decision was made to end the SCRUM club in its current form and hence this repo will no longer be updated. At some point, a similar initiative will hopefully be started by IDS. Keep an eye on their website in case you are interested.

2018-06-22: Summer Break

Since the start of the club in November 2017, we’ve had a total of 15 meetings, covering a wide variety of topics, including R, a bit of Python, version control using Git, reference managers, the data visualization tool Tableau, LaTeX, command line interfaces, remote computing, and Jupyter. The SCRUM club will now go on a well-deserved summer break until September. We will pick things up again then.

2018-05-23: Location for the Julia Workshop

Originally, the plan was to hold the Julia workshop at the Greepzaal at the azM (see below). However, the room does not have proper tables to sit at and is therefore not ideal for a workshop where we are going to be working on our laptops all day long. I’ve therefore reserved a different room, here at my (Wolfgang’s) department. It has proper tables and is therefore more suitable for such a workshop. Directions to the building can be found here: http://www.wvbauer.com/doku.php/courses_at_dept The room number is SN.2035.

2018-04-03: One-Day Workshop on Julia

You may wonder who Julia is and why you would want a whole workshop about her. Well, the name may be a bit strange, but Julia is a relatively new (and hence modern!) programming language for statistical and numerical computing. It is extremely fast, usually outperforming languages like Python, R, and Matlab, and in some cases even compiled languages like C and Fortran. In addition, Julia is free, open-source, cross-platform (runs on Windows, macOS, and Linux), and has garnered the attention of a quickly growing and enthusiastic user community. For more information, see here: https://julialang.org/

On May 25th, 2018, a one-day workshop will be held at Maastricht University introducing Julia and its capabilities. The workshop is aimed at researchers, (Master and PhD level) students, data analysts/scientist, and essentially anybody interested in learning how to work with Julia.

You should bring a laptop to the workshop with Julia installed. Installation files can be found here: https://julialang.org/downloads/

The workshop is free, but you should still register if you plan to attend. To register, simply send an email to Jolanda Koch at: jolanda.koch@maastrichtuniversity.nl

The short version:

What: One-Day Workshop on Julia (https://julialang.org/)
Date: May 25th, 2018
Time: 09:30 to 17:30
Room: Greepzaal at the azM (http://www.mumcplattegrond.nl/#map/d99_d26) (see blog entry above)
Register with: Jolanda Koch (jolanda.koch@maastrichtuniversity.nl)

Hope to see you at the workshop!

2018-03-21: Article in the Observant

An article about the SCRUM club has appeared in the Observant. You can also get a pdf of the article here.

2018-01-19: Institute of Data Science Announcement

On behalf of the Institute of Data Science team, we extend the invitation to our Symposium: The Future of a Data-Driven Society next January 25th. The event will feature keynote lectures by inspiring leaders and competitions for world-changing visions and outstanding research proposals. For more details here is the link for the event. And do not forget to follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

2017-11-29: Topic Survey

We would like to get a sense of people’s interest in the various topics we thought about covering (but you can always suggest further topics you think might be of interest to the group). To fill in the survey, please go here: https://app.gosoapbox.com/ and use code 854-921-257.

2017-11-29: Video Stream

In case the room fills up again to the brim for our second meeting today, we will try to provide a video stream. For this, we will start a Google Hangout and then post the link here. Not sure how well this will work and this is really only a backup option in case we run out of seats (so we won’t bother with this if there are enough seats for everybody). Update: We seem to have enough seats today so there won’t be a need for a video stream.

2017-11-17: Collaboration Tool

As was mentioned at the first meeting, we created a Slack channel/community to communicate within the club. However, there are some limitations on the free plan over at Slack, so following one of the suggestions, we are now going to try switching over to Gitter as our collaboration/communication tool. So, if you want to join the chat, please go here: https://gitter.im/scrum-club/ In order to sign in at Gitter, you either need a GitHub or Twitter account. We plan on covering Git + GitHub down the road, so it might be a good idea to create a GitHub (https://github.com/) account anyway (also in case you don’t use Twitter or don’t want to use it for signing into Gitter). Important announcements that are relevant to all will still be placed here.

2017-11-15: First Meeting

We had our first meeting this afternoon. 90+ people showed up, wanting to learn more about tools and software for scientific computing and research. It is great to see such a turnout, much bigger actually than we had anticipated. Unfortunately, the room was just a tad too small and some people had to stand / sit on the floor – very sorry about that! The Greepzaal at the AZM (where we will be meeting starting in 2018) might be a bit larger, so hopefully this will not be an ongoing issue. As suggested, we can also try a video stream for the next meeting, but I am not sure how well this will work. I am willing to give this a try though, so keep an eye on here for an announcement.

A few more thoughts: I am worried that some people might be turned off by the technicality of the approach we are taking in teaching R. And you might be right! I just recently stumbled across this blog post on How to Teach R. One of the recommendations is to NOT teach R as if it were a programming language. Well, technically it is, but the point is to focus on the cool things you can actually do with R in terms of analyzing/graphing data and not the nitty-gritty details of how everything works. That might be true if you want to sell people on using R. But I am hoping that you showed up to the first meeting because you are already convinced that R (and the other topics we want to cover) are useful to learn. And in the end, I think it is important to understand how R actually works, instead of us throwing some code at you that does one flashy thing, but it is not clear how it actually works. So, I hope you will have the patience to grind with us through some of the more technical aspects before we can get to creating animated 3-d plots and other silly things.

Hope to see you at the next meeting!

Wolfgang Viechtbauer