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Because it's Friday: Fly, fly away

In 2012, filmmakers Sophie and Liberty took a canoe trip on the Shannon River in Ireland. You can see their approach to a fog-enshrouded island in the still frames at the start of this video, and then they encountered sometime breathtaking in motion: (Via Vimeo Staff Picks.) It still amazes me that simple rules of individual agents (all one bird knows is to avoid predators and not collide with other birds) can create such complex (and beautiful) emergent behaviour. On a similar note, tracing the paths of indvidual birds create their own distinct patterns:   (via FlowingData). We'll be back on Monday, but if you're out and about this weekend, take a closer look at the birds in flight. You might see them in a different light.

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More Stories By David Smith

David Smith is Vice President of Marketing and Community at Revolution Analytics. He has a long history with the R and statistics communities. After graduating with a degree in Statistics from the University of Adelaide, South Australia, he spent four years researching statistical methodology at Lancaster University in the United Kingdom, where he also developed a number of packages for the S-PLUS statistical modeling environment. He continued his association with S-PLUS at Insightful (now TIBCO Spotfire) overseeing the product management of S-PLUS and other statistical and data mining products.<

David smith is the co-author (with Bill Venables) of the popular tutorial manual, An Introduction to R, and one of the originating developers of the ESS: Emacs Speaks Statistics project. Today, he leads marketing for REvolution R, supports R communities worldwide, and is responsible for the Revolutions blog. Prior to joining Revolution Analytics, he served as vice president of product management at Zynchros, Inc. Follow him on twitter at @RevoDavid

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