image/svg+xml Follow

I use Jupyter notebooks for prototyping, especially figs, but they are a nightmare if you don’t understand pros/cons & caveats [same conceptual arguments for why GUI for Matlab is bad ] and these slides by Joel Grus are hilarious on the matter:

@olivia LOL wow these slides are good and even insightful for a newbie like me. 😅 I love that notebooks can involve interactive elements for newbies to play around with the code I've setup for them, but as the slides mention, this requires making sure that one cell doesn't depend upon the execution of some other cell, leading to confusing results if/when they're executed out of sequence [or the assumed sequence].

@bthall @olivia slightly late to the party here, apologies... I saw those slides too (courtesy of hspter@twitter), and found them fascinating.

However, I'm not really a notebook user, so as an R user I gotta ask - is there a big win over something like a Shiny Gadget/webapp that can be packaged up, shared, and run in RStudio? Seems like that gets the interactivity without some of the headaches... But maybe I'm missing the point?

@gwmngilfen @olivia I'm not familiar with the R and shiny tech to say yes or no. But at one point I researched which language supported easily runnable interactive elements and the Python and notebooks route seemed much better than R and Shiny, which seemed to still require running things somehow or hosting the notebooks on a server. lets any user access a notebook with interactive elements and interact there, or a user can download that same notebook and run the exact same code on their machine just by opening it. My impression is that with Shiny, as you said, it requires additional steps to run the thing if you opt to download it and run it yourself - a burden that I felt was too significant for my target audience, the barely tech literate or patient.
Sign in to participate in the conversation
Scholar Social

Federated microblogging for academics

Scholar Social is a microblogging platform for researchers, grad students, librarians, archivists, undergrads, academically inclined high schoolers, educators of all levels, journal editors, research assistants, professors, administrators—anyone involved in academia who is willing to engage with others respectfully.

We strive to be a safe space for queer people and other minorities, recognizing that there can only be academic freedom where the existence and validity of interlocutors' identities is taken as axiomatic.

"An academic microblog that you can be proud to put on the last slide of a presentation at a conference"

"Official" monthly journal club!

(Participation is, of course, optional)

Scholar Social features a monthly "official" journal club, in which we try to read and comment on a paper of interest.

Any user of Scholar Social can suggest an article by sending the DOI by direct message to and one will be chosen by random lottery on the last day of the month. We ask that you only submit articles that are from *outside* your own field of study to try to ensure that the papers we read are accessible and interesting to non-experts.

Read more ...