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So the internet meme of the week is "What I actually do" -- if you haven't come across any of these amusing job descriptions yet, Mashable has a good roundup. Not to be left out, Jason Sullivan has shared one for Statisticians (thanks to Harlan for the tip):

"Machine Learning for Hackers" is a new book from O'Reilly Media by Drew Conway and John Myles White. A "hacker", here, is "someone who likes to solve problems and experiment with new technologies", and "Machine Learning" is usually thought of as a black-box, algorithmic approach to producing predictions or classifications from data.

The most recent edition of the Revolution Newsletter is out. The news section is below, and you can read the full February edition (with highlights from this blog and community events) online.

If you're in the San Francisco Bay Area on March 10, the ACM organizing a course on R that you might want to check out. Robert Kabacoff, author of the useful Quick-R website and the book R in Action, will present the course "An introduction to R for software developers and data analysts".

The R core group has announced release dates for the next two versions of R (with their code names):

2.14.2 "Gift-Getting Season" on Feb 29 (3rd anniversary of R-1.0.0!)
2.15.0 "Easter Beagle" on Mar 30

R 1.0.0 was released twelve years ago on February 29, 2000; this will be the third February 29 since then. (Hence Peter Dalgaard's little joke above.)

In case you missed them, here are some articles from January of particular interest to R users.

Sponsorships from Revolution Analytics are now available for local R user groups in 2012.

Eddie Izzard is my favourite stand-up comedian of all-time, and his surrealist style is complemented perfectly by this Lego animation (some NSFW language):

 

The animation was created by YouTube user Thorn2200, where you can find several other hilarious Eddie Izzard clips animated in Lego. Enjoy them, and have a great weekend!

It turns out there's another local R user group in Cambridge, UK. It's called CambR, and organizing committee member Laurent Gatto described its history to me in an email: