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satRday 2018

Friday, 16 March 201808:30
University Avenue, University of Cape Town (UCT), Cape Town


The R community and some of South Africa’s most forward thinking companies have come together to bring satRday back to Cape Town. This conference provides an opportunity to hear from and network with top Researchers, Data Scientists and Developers from the R community in South Africa and beyond.


The satRday Cape Town conference will kick off on the 16th of March 2018 with a day of workshops held by our Keynote Speakers. Note that these will be full day workshops and will take place in parallel, so you’ll have to choose between them!

R package development …from laying functions to package hatching!

Maëlle Salmon

This hands-on workshop will allow you to transform a bunch of R functions into an R package. You’ll also learn how to make it usable and used! We’ll assume you can write functions, and a basic familiarity with Git & GitHub.

Here is what we’ll learn:

  • Why develop a package?
  • What is in a package?
  • devtools workflow to create a package
  • Automatic tools for improving a package, from R CMD Check to linting
  • Creating a slick documentation website with pkgdown
  • Why and how to have your package reviewed?
  • How to make your package famous or at least reach your audience?
  • Package analytics via CRAN logs and via the gh package.

Attendees should bring a laptop with the latest versions of R and RStudio installed. Also bring your experience and questions about packages!

The Sport Statistician’s Toolbox in R

Stephanie Kovalchik

The workshop will cover a number of skills and statistical models that are common in sports statistics and show how each can be implemented in R. The workshop will introduce participants to a range of R packages and real sports examples will be used throughout. It will be very hands-on!

After completing this workshop, participants will be able to gather and clean public sports data more effectively, explore data with graphics, apply several common models used in sport, and share their sports statistics ideas through a blog. A brief outline of the workshop is given below.

Workshop Outline:

  • Sports data resources
  • Web scraping
  • Data exploration and validation
  • Sports models and real applications
  • Bradley-Terry paired comparison models.
  • Application: Which team is the strongest in the English Football Association League?
  • Pythagorean Theorem.
  • Application: How can we predict an NBA teams expected wins for the season?
  • Forecasting.
  • Application: What is the chance that a tennis serve will be a service winner?
  • Generalized Additive Models.
  • Application: How can we model the strike zone from baseball tracking data?
  • Sports Blogging

Further details and instructions will be sent to participants prior to the workshop.


Situated on the slopes of Devil’s Peak, the University of Cape Town (UCT) is South Africa’s oldest university, and one of Africa’s leading teaching and research institutions.

UCT’s new lecture theatre, located at the southern end of University Avenue, is the largest venue on campus and the first to earn a four-star green rating.

Travel Located in the heart of the Southern Suburbs, UCT is within easy reach of transport and accommodation.


  • Early Bird tickets now available! Offer ends 2018-01-20.
  • Standard price for Conference and Workshop passes will be R500 and R1500 respectively.
  • Early Bird tickets on offer until 20th January 2018 (or until sold out!).
  • No late or at the door registration available.

Workshop Pass

A workshop pass gives you access to one of the workshops held by our Keynote Speakers. These full day workshops will be run in parallel on the 16th March 2018.

  • (Early Bird R1000.00)
  • 1 Day Workshop
  • Lunch
  • Networking breaks with refreshments provided

Buy Workshop Pass

Conference Pass The Conference Pass gives you access to South Africa’s second satRday. Come and join us on the 17th March 2018 to meet with and hear from both local and international R enthusiasts!

Conference Pass (Early Bird R200.00) Morning Tutorials All Conference Talks Lunch Networking breaks with refreshments provided

Buy Conference Pass

Important Dates

Working up to the conference on 17 March 2018, these are the most important dates on your calendar:

  • Early-Bird Registration Deadline 2018-01-20
  • Tutorial Submission Deadline 2018-02-03
  • Talk Submission Deadline 2018-02-03
  • Official Notification of Submission Acceptance 2018-02-10
  • Registration Deadline 2018-03-03
  • Visualisation Challenge Deadline 2018-03-14
  • Workshops 2018-03-16
  • Conference 2018-03-17

Call for Papers

Presentation proposals for satRday Cape Town are now open.

Submit your proposal

What are the benefits of giving a presentation?

Speakers will have their registration fees refunded. Financial support may be possible for speakers. Prompt feedback on your proposed presentation.

Feel free to submit one or more proposal(s). We will be considering the following presentation formats:

  • Tutorial [60 min]
  • Lightning Talk [5 min]
  • Standard Talk [20 min]

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