To get ready for the Data Contest, you’ll want to ensure that your laptop already has installed on it all of the tools you’ll need. There is a set of tools that we use in most of our programs, and it will serve as a good base for your contest toolkit. These tools are:
- Tableau Public, for quick yet attractive visualizations.
- QGIS, for open source Geographic analysis and maps.
- The Anaconda Python distribution, to get IPython Notebook and many other important Python libraries.
- RStudio Desktop, an excellent R environment.
- Open Refine is particularly good for cleaning data sets that have names.
- Open Office for working with CSV and Excel files.
- Github account to share code.
Additionally, we frequently use Sqlite files for data storage and to sort and search thorough data using SQL. Sqlite is already installed almost everywhere, but you may want to get a Sqlite GUI to make it more like working with a spreadsheet.
If you’d like to get a visual introduction to these tools, we’ll be running Google Hangouts to demo the tools. Signup and get contact information for these sessions at our Meetup Page.
This same set of tools will serve you well if you come to the full day data conference that the Python Meetup group is hosting, starting at 8:30 on the same day as the Contest. Come early, learn some useful skills, and put them to the test in the afternoon. Visit the Data Science FunConference registration page for details and to get a free ticket.