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A Memorable Experience: Attending the NYC-R Conference and Key Takeaways

By July 27, 2023Blog, Events

This is a guest post by Joseph Korszun, Senior Manager of Data Solutions at ProCogia. ProCogia is a member of the R Consortium. Joe is a data scientist with a background in mathematics and engineering. He is passionate about using statistical analysis to improve business decisions by developing scalable and flexible solutions that solve complex problems.


New York City, known for its vibrant energy and thriving tech scene, became the epicenter of data and analytics during the recent NYC-R Conference. As an avid data enthusiast, I couldn’t resist the opportunity to immerse myself in this bustling conference and gain valuable insights into the world of R and Python programming.

I had the pleasure of representing ProCogia and the R-Consortium. The experts who stood before us showcased their deep knowledge and dedication to advancing data science. It was remarkable to see people so passionate about the R programming language and its applications in the field. Throughout the event, they engaged the audience with informative presentations and interactive workshops, sparking insightful discussions among attendees. The positive reception from the crowd highlighted the significance of collaboration and knowledge-sharing in the data science community. I was inspired by their expertise and left the conference with a renewed enthusiasm for data science and the possibilities it offers. The event provided a fantastic opportunity to connect with like-minded professionals and learn from the best in the industry. I am grateful for the experience and eagerly look forward to seeing more contributions in the future. In this blog post, I will share my experiences attending the NYC-R Conference and highlight some key takeaways that left a lasting impression.

Pre-Conference: Workshops at NYC-R

The NYC-R Conference’s workshops promise a thrilling exploration of diverse data science topics using the power of R programming. Attendees will embark on an immersive journey to delve into essential areas of data science, including time series forecasting, machine learning, Bayesian data analysis, and causal inference. Industry experts led these workshops offer a unique opportunity to expand data science expertise and harness the true potential of R in driving data-driven innovations. Some of the below workshops were provided in the first two days of the NYC-R Conference:

  • Tidy Time Series and Forecasting in R by Michell O’Hara-Wild
  • Machine Learning in R by Max Kuhn
  • Bayesian Data Analysis and STAN by Jonah Gabry
  • Causal Inference in R by Malcolm Barrett and Lucky D’Agostino McGowan

Day 1: An Exciting Kickoff

The conference commenced with an invigorating address, highlighting the growing significance of R in the industry and the importance of fostering its continued development. The vibrant atmosphere was infectious as I was surrounded by like-minded individuals who shared the same passion for data science.

The day was packed with informative sessions covering a various of topics, from advanced data visualization techniques to machine learning algorithms.

Day 1 of the NYC-R Conference featured diverse and insightful presentations, showcasing the remarkable potential of the R programming language in data science. Attendees explored various topics, including transitioning to Quarto for interactive data reports, building R packages with LLMs, and making impactful design decisions for statistical software visualizations. The presentations also delved into data-driven marketing channel attribution, the power of OpenAI’s Embeddings API, and the art of creating captivating presentations through Slidecraft. Experts from NFL Next Gen Stats revealed the many models powering sports analytics, underscoring the transformative role of data science in the sports industry. The conference left attendees inspired and equipped with valuable skills to drive data- driven innovation in their fields.

The Importance of Continuous Learning

Day 1 of the NYC-R Conference was a remarkable showcase of the importance of continued learning and the incredible potential of the R programming language. As data enthusiasts gathered, the conference provided a platform for exploring various facets of R and its impact on data-driven decision-making.

The NYC-R Conference became a hub of knowledge sharing and collaboration, where data professionals engaged in vibrant discussions and exchanged ideas. This collaborative environment emphasized the significance of staying updated with the latest trends in data science to remain at the forefront of innovation.

Day 2: Unlocking Data Insights through Advanced Analytics

Day 2 of the NYC-R Conference was a captivating journey into the forefront of data science. Attendees were treated to lectures and presentations that showcased the latest advancements in the field. The exploration of Bayesian Boosting revealed its potential for predictive modeling, offering a fresh perspective on data analysis techniques.

In an enlightening presentation, a renowned data science expert delved into the importance of democratizing data access in the session “An Ode to Permissionless Data Science.” This inspiring talk encouraged attendees to foster a more inclusive and collaborative data science community, empowering data professionals to drive innovation together.

Participants were enthralled by demonstrations of LLM use, equipping them with practical skills to build robust R packages. The “How to Make Decisions with Data” session, empowered attendees to derive meaningful insights, ensuring data-driven strategies and informed decision-making.

The day continued with captivating lectures that covered various data science aspects, concluding with a live episode of the SuperDataScience Podcast. The podcast provided invaluable industry insights and sparked engaging discussions, leaving attendees inspired and eager to apply their newfound knowledge in their data-driven endeavors. Day 2 at the NYC-R Conference left participants with a deeper understanding of data science’s evolving landscape, motivating them to make a lasting impact in the dynamic world of data-driven innovation.

Language Wars Still at Large

Wes McKinney, the brilliant mind behind pandas, addressed the ever-lingering “Language Wars” in the data science realm. With a focus on breaking down barriers and fostering interoperability, McKinney unveiled how Apache Arrow and the Python Polars library are revolutionizing the data stack. Attendees were enthralled by McKinney’s insights on harnessing the power of these cutting-edge tools to streamline data operations, improve performance, and enable seamless data exchange across programming languages. As the discussion unfolded, it became evident that the quest for data-driven excellence continues, and the open-source community remains at the forefront of bridging the gap between programming languages for the betterment of data science.

The Power of Community

The conference highlighted the power of community in the world of data science. Interacting with professionals from diverse backgrounds provided fresh perspectives and insights, fostering an environment of collaborative learning and growth. As a sponsor member of the R-Consortium, ProCogia extends its heartfelt gratitude for their invaluable support in making this event possible. Their commitment to advancing the R programming language and data science community has been instrumental in creating a vibrant platform for knowledge sharing and networking. The connections made during the NYC-R Conference are a testament to the strength of this community, forming the foundation for future collaborations and knowledge sharing that will undoubtedly drive data-driven innovations for years to come. ProCogia is proud to be part of this thriving community and looks forward to continuing its involvement in fostering growth and innovation within the R community.


Attending the NYC-R Conference was an exhilarating and enlightening experience. The conference reiterated the widespread adoption of R as a powerful tool in data science. Numerous presenters showcased their impressive projects and highlighted the versatility of R in data analysis, modeling, and visualization. It became evident that R is not just a programming language but an entire ecosystem that supports data-driven decision-making across various domains.

The conference showcased the immense potential of R in data science, emphasized the importance of continuous learning, and highlighted the value of community and collaboration. As I left the conference with a wealth of new knowledge and connections, I felt inspired to apply what I had learned in my own data-driven endeavors. The NYC-R Conference not only expanded my horizons but also reinforced my passion for the exciting world of data science.