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Friday, August 19, 2016

Microsoft Links Power BI to R

 ... By Sharon Machlis

I remain pleasantly surprised at Microsoft's enthusiasm for adding R to its analytics ecosystem (and not [at least yet] fulfilling suspicions its end game is to fork a version of R that is semi-proprietary). 

Today offered another example, with an R for the Masses with Power BI webinar touting R as an option for data heavy-lifting within its Power BI platform. Granted, as an R user I'm biased, but it makes a lot more sense to lean on a language already in wide use for data work, as opposed to expecting people to learn its own DAX and M. During today's webinar, Microsoft revealed that its own survey showed more than 80% of respondents wanted to use R for advanced data work.

Power BI users could already run R scripts within the software to pull in data, to reshape and otherwise wrangle data, and to visualize data. During the webinar, Microsoft announced an R Script Showcase with examples designed to "find inspiration for leveraging R scripts in Power BI. There are already examples for using R to find clusters within your data, generate forecasts and create decision trees.   ... " 

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