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Creating empty data frames with dfTemplate() and dfTemplateMatch()

03 Feb, 2019

Creating a data frame is fairly simple but when you need to create a large empty data frame with columns that have different classes it takes several command lines. A few days ago, I decided to write a function to simplify this operation and I came to realize that such a function would actually be very useful to ease the row binding of data frames whose column names partially match.... Read More

Ubuntu + Windows 7 - dual partition

09 Dec, 2018

Long story short, I recently had access to a Dell Studio XPS 8100 with Windows 7 on it. I was told that the computer was not working well and so was allowed to tweak it. The computer was actually working well so I simply decided to add a partition Ubuntu. Ubuntu is based on Debian and arguably more beginner-friendly than the latter. Roughly speaking: Ubuntu = Debian Testing + software to simplify its use There are a couple of articles online that are opposing these two Linux distributions, which makes no real sense to me.... Read More

A few thoughts on R packages

03 Dec, 2018

Jonas Geschke, Ignasi Bartomeus and I have recently released rcites v-1.0.0 on CRAN, a R client for the Species+ API after it has been reviewed by rOpenSci. In this post, I would like to share this recent experience as well as several valuable resources. What is an R package? In the introduction of his book R packages, Hadley Wickham wrote: A package bundles together code, data, documentation, and tests, and is easy to share with others.... Read More


The overarching goal of this blog is quite straightforward: tackle challenges and opportunities provided by this new era of open-access and computationally intensive research in the field of ecology. You will therefore find a collection of blog posts that reflect this: code snippets, ecological insights, new and exciting computational tools, opinions on various field of ecology and programming, etc.

In the interest of full disclosure, we also have a hidden agenda for this blog. As a group revolving almost exclusively around academia (for more about us) - and as such, some might say out of touch with reality - we have to write a lot, which can be quite hard (cough read procrastination cough). This blog is therefore also our attempt at significantly stepping-up our writing game!

Wordcloud created with the wordcloud2 R package; silhouette image available on PhyloPic (Lepidochelys olivacea); full R script available on .