Create, Publish, and Analyze Personal Websites Using R and RStudio


Create, Publish, and Analyze Personal Websites Using R and RStudio


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In 2018, I had virtually no online presence other than about 100 random LinkedIn connections. I knew this was a problem given my budding interest in Data Science, the increasing demand for project portfolios, and my perceived need to “stand out” in the digital crowd.

So, I learned how to publish my first personal website, Abnormal Distributions. Yes, I know, it looks outdated and definitely not as cool as this website. However, Abnormal Distributions took my online presence and my career to new heights. Since going live, Abnormal Distributions has served over 50,000 page views and 20,000 users from all over the world. I began posting content on LinkedIn with links to my website, and in the span of a year I received 1,700 LinkedIn connection requests from Data Scientists and professionals in related fields. I began receiving job opportunities from recruiters who discovered me by landing on my website. Abnormal Distributions sparked my creativity, deepened my subject matter expertise through writing, and gave me the tools I needed to confidently engage with the digital crowd. It turned out to be a wonderful investment of time and energy.

My goal with this book is to help you launch your own personal website and, hopefully, experience the same personal transformation that I experienced after I launched mine.

You will learn the exact methodology that I use to create, design, publish, and analyze websites using R, RStudio, and other freely available tools including GitHub, Hugo, Netlify, and Google Analytics. No prior experience in web development, R, or any of the aforementioned tools is needed to be successful with this book.

  1. Introduction
    1. About this book
    2. Target audience
    3. Reasons to have a website
    4. What you will learn
    5. Tools you will use
    6. Inspiring examples
    7. FAQ
    8. About the author
  2. Complete end-to-end example
    1. How it works
    2. Install software
    3. Create accounts
    4. Generate a website
    5. Make some edits
    6. Integrate Formspree
    7. Push the website to GitHub
    8. Deploy the website on Netlify
    9. Integrate Google Analytics
    10. Push updates to GitHub
    11. Analyze Google Analytics data
    12. Next steps
  3. Discovering your style
    1. How it works
    2. The 90/10 rule for choosing a theme
    3. Recommended Hugo themes
    4. Next steps
  4. Generating your website
    1. Prerequisites
    2. How it works
    3. Generate your site
    4. Use a different Hugo theme
    5. Serve the website locally
    6. Next steps
  5. Fine tuning the look and feel
    1. Prerequisites
    2. How it works
    3. About CSS
    4. About the Inspect tool
    5. Before you begin
    6. Update the base URL
    7. Title, description, and author
    8. Profile image
    9. Favicon
    10. Font style
    11. Font sizes
    12. Colors
    13. Next steps
  6. Configuring pages and features
    1. Prerequisites
    2. Before you begin
    3. Rename pages
    4. Delete pages
    5. Edit the About page
    6. Delete default posts
    7. Edit post date format
    8. Remove dates from Posts page
    9. Delete language translations
    10. Edit social media links
    11. Configure contact forms
    12. Customize contact forms
    13. View contact form submissions
    14. Next steps
  7. Authoring original content
    1. Prerequisites
    2. How it works
    3. Example R Markdown posts
    4. Create a new post
    5. Add a post summary
    6. Add a table of contents
    7. Add code highlighting
    8. Add tags and categories
    9. Add a post thumbnail
    10. Next steps
  8. Going live on the internet
    1. Prerequisites
    2. How it works
    3. Upload files to GitHub
    4. Configure Netlify for deployment
    5. Purchase a custom domain name
    6. Next steps
  9. Integrating Google Analytics
    1. Prerequisites
    2. How it works
    3. Set up Google Analytics
    4. Push updates to GitHub
    5. Confirm the integration
    6. Browse the Google Analytics UI
    7. Use R for data analysis
  10. Tips and tricks
    1. Serve your website locally
    2. Push updates to GitHub
    3. Check your website
    4. Rebuild a clean website
    5. Find free images
  11. Getting help
    1. Join the Slack workspace
    2. Connect with me
    3. Additional resources