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Practical Data Science with R Book Update (April 2019)

I thought I would give a personal update on our book: Practical Data Science with R 2nd edition; Zumel, Mount; Manning 2019.

The second edition should be fully available this fall! Nina and I have finished up through chapter 10 (of 12), and Manning has released previews of up through chapter 7 (with more to come!).

At this point the second edition is very real. So it makes me feel a bit conflicted about the 1st edition. If you need a good guide to data science in R in paper form right now please consider buying the 1st edition. If you are happy with an e-book: please consider buying the 2nd edition MEAP (Manning Early Access Program) now, it gets you previews of the new book, a complete e-copy of the 1st edition, and a complete e-copy of the 2nd edition when that is done! And we expect the fully printed version of the 2nd edition to be available this fall.

The 1st edition remains an excellent book that we are very proud of. I have 12 more copies of it (that I paid for) in my closet for gifting. Just four days ago I achieved a personal 1st edition goal: handing a print copy of the 1st edition to Robert Gentleman in person!

But, the 1st edition’s time is coming to an end.

The 1st edition has been with Nina and me since we started work on it in November of 2012 (getting the 1st edition out in April 2014). Earlier drafts were titled “Successful Data Science in R”, and issues around book title made me so nervous the entire book production directory was named “DataScienceBook” until last year about 4 years after the book publication!

Well, now for me Practical Data Science with R, 2nd edition is “the book.” Nina and I have put a lot of time into revising and improving the book for the new edition. In fact we started the 2nd edition March of 2018, so we have been working on this new edition for quite some time. If you wonder why you have not seen Nina for the last year, this has been the major reason (she is the leader on both editions of the book).

Practical Data Science with R 2nd edition; Zumel, Mount; Manning 2019 is intended as an improved revision of the 1st edition. We fixed things, streamlined things, incorporated new packages, and updated the content to catch up with over 5 years of evolution of the R ecosystem. We also had the chance to add some new content on boosted trees, model explanation, and data wrangling (including data.table!).

On a technical side we have a free support site for the book: As with the first edition: we share all code examples, so you don’t have to try and copy and paste from the e-copy. This is fairly substantial, as Practical Data Science with R 2nd edition; Zumel, Mount; Manning 2019 is an example driven book. We also have just released R-markdown re-renderings of all of the examples from the book. These confirm the examples run correctly and are where you can look if you are hung up on trying to run an example (which will almost always be an issue of adding the path from where you have the code to the data, or a small matter of installing packages).

If you have and liked the 1st edition, please consider buying the 2nd edition: it is a substantial improvement. It is the same book, but a better version of it. If you want a book that teaches you how to work as data scientist using R as the example: please buy Practical Data Science with R 2nd edition; Zumel, Mount; Manning 2019.

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Data Scientist and trainer at Win Vector LLC. One of the authors of Practical Data Science with R.

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