Principal component analysis (PCA) is a powerful approach for exploring high-dimensional data, but can be challenging for learners to comprehend. In this talk, I will walk through a practical and interactive explanation of what PCA is and how it works. As a case study I’ll explore a domain that many data analysts and data scientists are familiar with: programming languages and technologies, as understood through traffic to Stack Overflow questions. We will explore how interactive visualization using Shiny gives us insight into the complex, real-world relationships in high-dimensional datasets.

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