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YOW! 2012: John Cook - R

19 minutes, 29 seconds


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John Cook, an Independent Consultant working at the confluence of applied mathematics and software development. After receiving a Ph.D. in from the University of Texas, he taught mathematics at Vanderbilt University. He then left academia to work as a software developer and consultant.

Here, we discuss one of John's favorite topics, the R programming language.


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  • I was employed at MD Anderson at the time of the interview. As of January 2013, I'm now an independent consultant.

  • CharlesCharles Welcome Change

    @JohnDCook: Hi John! I've updated the description to reflect this. Congratulations! This is great news for companies who will no doubt benefit from your excellent programming skills, broad knowledge of mathematical computation, statistics, modeling, etc..

    Right on!


  • JedrekJedrek

    R is a great example of code in which performance is not a critical problem.
    If somebody would like to calculate a variance of some given data it really doesn't matter if it takes 0.01 seconds or 0.001 seconds. For typical datasets it is acceptable.

    In long run it is better optimize everything at the machine code level but today it is time-consuming and because of that it is too expensive.
    It is much faster (and because of that cheaper) to write the modeling code in R instead of rewriting everything in the machine code (which is a very slow and complicated process and because of that very expensive).

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