Weapons of Math Destruction

Recently, whenever I am talking to my fellow data librarians, it is not long before someone brings up Cathy O’Neil’s new book Weapons of Math Destruction : How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy.

Alarmingly, closed-source algorithms are playing an increasing role in social policy. O’Neil examines some of the (bad) data used as inputs into these algorithms and the problematic assumptions made by their creators (e.g., predictive policing based on arrest records not crime reports, recidivism scores for first-time criminal sentencing, teacher value-added scores used to fire educators). Continue reading

Posted in Data Ethics | Comments Off on Weapons of Math Destruction

On research questions and process

Making the jump from a research question to a method for answering that question can be complicated. Head over to Teaching and Learning with Technology at Reed to read my recent post: Translating research from question to query. First few lines are below…

Earlier this term, I heard from students in Noelwah Netusil’s natural resources economics class. They were hoping I could help them identify how many homes are within the Johnson Creek floodplain.

This is certainly a spatial problem, so using some spatial system — in this case, a GIS* — is a good first step. Another important challenge as researcher is to translate your question into something your analytical tool can understand… [read more]

Posted in Mapping / Geospatial, Quantitative Analysis | Comments Off on On research questions and process

Upcoming Zotero and EndNote Workshops (February 2016)

Need help with citation management? Interested in learning more about EndNote or Zotero? Join us for one (or more!) of our 30 minute drop-in workshops.

All workshops will be in Library L17 unless otherwise noted below.

endnote_128 Continue reading

Posted in News / Announcements, Workshops | Comments Off on Upcoming Zotero and EndNote Workshops (February 2016)

Paideia R Workshop: Interactive Data Visualization

idv

On 1/20 from 12pm-1pm in Vollum 126, I led a workshop on using R to produce data graphics that we can manipulate and interactive with.

Continue reading

Posted in Programming, Quantitative Analysis, Workshops | Comments Off on Paideia R Workshop: Interactive Data Visualization

Paideia R Workshop: Shiny Interactive Data Analysis

probapp

(Screenshot of a shiny app developed with Logan Soich and available here.)

On 1/19 from 3pm-4pm in ETC 211, Dean Young and I led a workshop on getting started with the shiny package in R.

Continue reading

Posted in Programming, Quantitative Analysis, Workshops | Comments Off on Paideia R Workshop: Shiny Interactive Data Analysis

Paideia R Workshop: The Brand New RMarkdown Senior Thesis Template!

reed_template

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On 1/19 from 11am-12pm in Vollum 110, I led a workshop on a new way to create a reproducible senior thesis.  I’ve put together a template for senior theses using RMarkdown. RMarkdown allows for the use of simple text editing commands and also interfaces with LaTeX without all of the overhead of actually typing a LaTeX document. I’ll demo the template and also show how to easily add your data analysis and output into your thesis using R. Continue reading

Posted in Programming, Quantitative Analysis, Workshops | Comments Off on Paideia R Workshop: The Brand New RMarkdown Senior Thesis Template!

Paideia workshop: Data analysis using Stata

stata_workshop-300x291Join me this afternoon, 1/21 from 1-2pm, in ETC 211 for a workshop focusing on using Stata for data analysis.

Here are materials (Reed login required) for the workshop, including data, slides, and a “do file” with all the code we’ll be using. Continue reading

Posted in Quantitative Analysis, Workshops | Comments Off on Paideia workshop: Data analysis using Stata

Mapping workshop: Paideia edition

Join me in ETC 205 this afternoon from 1-2pm for a workshop on maps and mapping, working with some publicly-available local data via Metro/RLIS.

Below are some datasets for locally-relevant mapping. Take a look through the data and choose datasets that interest you. Click on the link and choose “download” (under Shapefile) to access the file. Continue reading

Posted in Mapping / Geospatial, Workshops | Comments Off on Mapping workshop: Paideia edition

GIS workshop : Paideia edition

This afternoon (1/19, 1pm) I am leading a workshop on spatial analysis, and spatial thinking in ETC 205; materials below. (The brief exercise below is the same walk-through, but written up separately for ArcGIS and QGIS.) [slides from presentation] Continue reading

Posted in Mapping / Geospatial, Workshops | Tagged , , | Comments Off on GIS workshop : Paideia edition

Workshop: Reproducible Research

Miracle+Occurs+Image From 4:00 – 5:00 PM on Wednesday, October 14, 2015, I’ll be leading a workshop in ETC 211.  The title of the workshop is “Reproducible Research.”  All are welcome!

The slides are available here.  You’ll have a chance during the workshop to try some problems and work more with using R Markdown to produce reproducible reports.  In addition, I will be giving a sneak preview of an R Markdown template for use on Senior Theses projects.

 

Cartoon created by Sidney Harris (The New Yorker).

Posted in Quantitative Analysis, Workshops | Comments Off on Workshop: Reproducible Research