On Thursday, February 4th at 7 pm UTC, as part of the Why R? Webinar series, we have the honour to host Joseph O’Brien from the University of Limerick. He will be sharing R techniques to parse data via web scraping procedures using a Fantasy Premiere League game to illustrate it.
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- Joseph O’Brien
PhD student working with Prof. James Gleeson at the University of Limerick within the Department of Mathematics and Statistics (MACSI). His research is focussed on the intersection between mathematical modelling, data science, and networks in order to provide understanding of various complex systems. This has resulted in research describing the spreading of memes on social media, applying ideas from control theory to financial systems, and even identifying characteristics of successful competitors in Fantasy sports. You can find more information at his website.
What makes a good (fantasy) football manager? - web scraping and data analysis in R
Arising from the desire for spectators of sporting contests to obtain more enjoyment, Fantasy sports have become increasing popular in recent years. These sports involve competitors to create virtual teams that score points based upon the statistical performances of the physical athletes. Given the virtual structure of these contests there exists an array of data regarding competitor actions available online as a result of their digital traces. In this talk we will look at some techniques within the R programming language that may be used to parse this data via web scraping procedures. We will then describe one such example study focussing specifically on the Fantasy Premier League, the fantasy equivalent of the top division within English soccer. In particular, we will consider visual techniques from the Tidyverse suite of packages that allow a descriptive story regarding the science of success behind those competitors who perform well in the game to be developed.