R vs Python: A False Data Science Dichotomy

There have been a few articles lately posing the age old question: “Is R or Python a better language to learn for a budding young data scientist?” The consensus answer appears to be “It depends”, but in reality there’s no need to choose between R and Python, because you can have both. It’s called RPy2: http://rpy.sourceforge.net/rpy2/doc-2.1/html/introduction.html What is “Data Science”? Before talking about how RPy2 enables “data science”, I’m going to point out that “data science” is a bit of an odd term. All science is “data science”. “Non-data science” is a completely different field: philosophy. “Data science” is just science, which is the discipline of publicly testing ideas by systematic observation, controlled experiment, and Bayesian inference. The goal of “data science” is to draw statistically valid inferences from the data.…

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