I mused over Test Driven Analysis on this blog before, but it was Richard Pugh’s talk on SAS to R Migration at LondonR last week that brought the topic back into my mind and clarified a few things.
Rich’s presentation focused on the challenge of how to ensure that the new system (R) would provide the same answers as the legacy system (SAS).
This is when it clicked with me: My brain is just another system as well.
At the last LondonR meeting Francine Bennett from Mastodon C shared some of her experience and findings from an analysis of a large prescriptions data set of the UK’s national health service (NHS). However, it was her last slide, which I found the most thought provoking. It asked for the definition of the following term: Test-driven analysis? Francine explained that test driven development (TDD) is a concept often used in software development for quality assurance and she wondered if a similar approach could be also used for data analysis.