Carpentry Clippings, 13 February, 2018 

Highlights from the Software and Data Carpentry Community Calendar

Community News


New Logo, New Carpentries

Our new logo celebrates the merging of Software and Data Carpentry, and gives The Carpentries its own distinct identity. It retains a ‘Carpentry’ feel - at the basic level, it represents a wrench around a hexagonal bolt. Yet it also conveys a sense of exhilaration and celebration - that magic moment when you ‘get’ something and your arms shoot up in celebration. There are many such ‘aha!’ moments in Carpentries’ workshops, so it is fitting that our logo represent not just the hard work (the wrench) but the satisfaction of achievement and mastery (the ‘Yay!’).

The Same ...
From the community side, much of how we operate will seem unchanged. As The Carpentries, we will continue to teach foundational computational and data skills to researchers, observe and evolve our Code of Conduct, grow memberships, help organize workshops, and bring new instructors through our Instructor Training program. We will still support the growth and spread of our community - that will never change. The individual ‘Carpentries’ will remain as discrete lesson organizations - we plan to communicate more about how these projects are evolving as the year goes on. The Software and Data Carpentry logos will remain as distinct lesson and workshop identities. 

… But Different
Tracy Teal is now our Executive Director, two staffs have merged, and we are working with a new fiscal sponsor, Community Initiatives. Our governance has merged into a brand new Executive Council. We hope the changes will streamline communication and make our working practices more efficient. CarpentryCon 2018 in Dublin will be a celebration of just how far we have come as a community.

New Grant ...
We have received a grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation to train researchers in essential data skills and build a general framework for collaborative lesson development to scale data training. This grant will allow us to create general infrastructure, guidelines and pathways for community engagement to establish open source lesson development as a practice and enable scalable, collaborative data training. This work will be a proving ground for the establishment of  infrastructure and processes for collaborative and open lesson development in other domains and topics. Read more.

... New Staff Member
FrancoisWe are excited to announce that François Michonneau has joined The Carpentries as our Curriculum Development Lead to take forward the work funded by the Sloan grant. Formerly a postdoctoral researcher at the Whitney Laboratory for Marine Bioscience at the University of Florida, François’s research area is biodiversity. He developed a programming course for graduate students (R programming for biologists) and is an active member of the rOpenSci community. He is a certified Instructor and Instructor Trainer. Find out more about François at his website.

Calling New Maintainers
We have a call out for new people to sign up for lesson maintenance. Carpentry Maintainers work with the community to make sure that lessons stay up-to-date, accurate, functional and cohesive. Interested? See the guidelines before signing up here. If you apply by 21 February, you can join Maintainer onboarding in March. Session times and curriculum links are on our etherpad.

Tractenberg Webinar on Short Format Training
We had a great turnout for our recent webinar on short format training with Dr Rochelle Tractenberg. Even better, Dr Tractenberg stayed on for an extra hour to answer questions! She also took the time to go back through the etherpad and respond to all the issues raised. Her webinar encouraged our Instructors to think more deeply about using Bloom’s taxonomy to teach metacognitive skills, and to examine exactly what we expect (and can expect) our learners to take away from a workshop. This is a discussion we want to continue, so stay tuned! If you missed the webinar or want a refresher, check out the resources - the etherpad, the annotated slides,  the video recording, or the audio-only recording. We are very grateful to Dr Tractenberg for giving her time so generously to discuss this important topic with our community.

Subcommittee Activity

Mentoring Groups
The mentoring showcase took place on 6 February. A host of community members from all over shared slides with information about the cool things they did and learned during the three and a half month mentoring period. On the etherpad, both mentors and mentees described what, in their opinion, a mentor is. We are proud of the interaction between our mentors and mentees, and look forward to launching the next round of mentoring in April. Mentoring groups are encouraged to continue meeting if they want to, and to keep the conversation going via our mentoring Slack channel. If you do not have access to the channel, please email Kari Jordan.

Mentoring Subcommittee Survey
The Mentoring Subcommittee is looking for ways to improve opportunities for mentoring and interaction among our instructor community. The instructor discussion sessions are one of the platforms for these interactions. The subcommittee is gathering data to try to better understand the needs of our community members, and to improve the structure and format of discussion sessions to meet these needs.

To help with this, please take a moment to fill out this brief survey.

The survey should not take more than a few minutes to complete. Please fill out the survey even if you have never attended a discussion session. Feedback from people who have never been to one of these sessions will make the survey results more useful than if we only hear from attendees.

Lesson Infrastructure Subcommittee
The next meeting will take place on 14 February 2018 at 18:00 UTC. Meeting connection details and the agenda are on the etherpad.

CarpentryCon Taskforce Update
CarpentryCon posterIt has been a big week for CarpentryCon 2018 organizers. Registration is open and more  than 400 people have visited the ticketing page so far. People can now use this form to apply for a travel subsidy. We will release a Call for Abstracts this week. A range of accommodation options should also be announced soon. Keep an eye on the website (the draft program is up) or sign up for updates. Taskforce member Belinda Weaver designed the winning poster in the promotional poster competition (but abstained from voting in the competition!)


Hugo Bowne-Anderson has just launched DataFramed, a data science podcast from DataCamp. Guests so far include Maëlle Salmon talking epidemiology and Jake VanderPlas on astronomy. An upcoming podcast will feature the awesome Katy Huff talking nuclear energy, academia and data science. Sign up to listen.

Tweet of the Week


Tracy Teal will keynote at the Galaxy Community Conference (GCC) / Bioinformatics Open Source Conference (BOSC), 25-30 June, Portland, OR. If you are going too, you can list your name on our events meetups page.

What you may have missed on the blog and mailing lists

Jacqui Muller posted about the Stanford Women in Data Science Datathon (which runs until 28 February). Karin Lagesen got a great response when she asked for a good pandas intro. Peter Steinbach raised the idea of inverted classrooms. Greg Wilson raised the Guzdial post listed below, and got some discussion about our audience going, and Carol Willing alerted people to another post on the topic by Philip Guo.

Papers & manuscripts from the community

Community job postings
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