Reviewing the year gone

By Yanina Bellini Saibene

December 23, 2023

Yani and her family with the Montevideo big letters in the backgroud

Yani and her family in Montevideo for LatinR Conference

One more year where the bonds, friendships, and family wrap up the best moments. Another year with ups and downs, with learning, with a lot of work and achievements, and with my communities that seek to make this world a better place for everyone at the center of my activities.

Thanks to all the people who shared with me this year’s journey. Here is a monthly summary of my 2023.


January was for family summer vacations, the kickoff meetings for the rOpenSci Champions Program, and the first rOpenSci Community Call of the year about the target package. I also developed rOpenSCi Champions Program mentors' training and support material.

We start the R-Ladies Leadership Team weekly meetings.

We say goodbye to my grandma.


February was for VISA interviews, learning Software Design by Example, teaching for the rOpenSci Champions Program, and met Natalia Morandeira and Mariela Rajngewerc in-person.

I got renewed for another year as a GitHub star and I was interviewed by the RConsortium to celebrate the 23 anniversary of the R language. I delivered several talks about rOpenSci to other communities. It feels so good when other people find what you are doing useful.

It was also for grow vegetables in our garden and for reading The Grieving Brain by Mary-Frances O’Connor.


My kids started their school, and I started teaching another round of my undergrad course on Data Management and Visualization for Data Science at UNAB, Argentina.

We have the first version in Spanish of the rOpenSci comprehensive guide to software development.

It was also a month of restoring books, enjoying my new bookcase, and starting swimming - I completed 21000 meters.

New bookcase that look like a maze, front cover of four restored spanish books, family picture of the first day at school of Yani's kids

New bookcase build by Yani’s hubby, Yani’s old restored books and first day at school of Yani’s kids


CSV,Conf came to South America and Buenos Aires for the first time. I was part of the organizing team and delivered a talk about community connections. That my first talk in English at an in-person conference happened in Buenos Aires is ironic and hilarious.

We also have The Carpentries Executive Council retreat in Buenos Aires and the CZI’s Accelerating Open Science in Latin America meeting where I lead a working session on How do you measure the impact of a champions program?.

I met many incredible people in person at these three events! Including Karthik Ram, rOpenSci PI.

Group pictures from CZI, The Carpentries and CSV,Conf

Group pictures from CZI, The Carpentries and CSV,Conf

R-Ladies Global Team opened a call for volunteers to serve in multiple roles critical to the sustainable growth and maintenance of the organization

I read Driftwood by Marie Brennan and swam 10200 meters.


This month was for planning the second cohort of the rOpenSci Champions Program and the community calls for the rest of the year.

I was in an panel as GitHub Star with Thomas Dohmke, GitHub’s CEO, at the University of Buenos Aires, and Open Life Science invited me to share a talk about coding style and testing for their OLS-7 cohort.

I enjoyed teaching Developing Software Together: using Git with Paola Corrales for the applicants of the rOpenSci Champions Program.

I also read Lab Girl by Hope Jahren, Avatar Legacy, Nettle and Bone by T. Kingfisher, and I swam 20800 meters.


June is for remember Ana.

We have our community call {targets} in Action, and I made some changes to our process to organize these community calls. rOpenSci left X (former Twitter).

I collaborated on a tip sheet that explores 12 guiding questions to help improve the accessibility of virtual events.

The book Data Science by Design Anthology Vol. 2. Our Environment. was published! Natalia Morandeira and I wrote a chapter called Multilingual Data Science. Ten Tips to Translate Science and Tech Content. It is extraordinary to publish something you wrote with a friend.

Once again, I taught the Agro Big Data course in the Diploma of New Technologies in Agriculture at the Universidad de la Empresa, Uruguay.

I read Turning Darkness into Light by Marie Brennan and Tales of the Unexpected by Roald Dahl.

I swam 20200 meters.


It was a month to share the call for the rOpeSci Champions Program. We featured our Champions and Mentors in a great community call. The Portuguese-speaking community start translating our comprehensive software development guide.

I restarted my work on the second edition and Spanish version of Teaching Tech Together. We created and taught a 12-hour training in Spanish based on the book.

I taught the Introduction to Data Science for Agriculture course of the Latin American Diploma in AgroAnalitycs at UCES, Argentina.

I quit my teaching position at UNAB. We enjoyed the winter school holidays. No swimming in winter.


August was to learn how to swimming butterfly style and swim 20800 meters. I was also to paint my kids' room wall with a monster city.

I delivered 3 talks, had a nice chat with Data Umbrella about my experience in communities and help people with their Champions Program application.

We start onboarding the new member of the R-Ladies Global Team and offboarding some valuable members who have served the community for many years. This means we start using, adjusting and testing all the changes we made to our process.


I attended my first Posit Conf in person!!! Sharing those days with the complete new R-Ladies’ Leadership Team ( Shannon, Avery, Mo, and Riva) and one of the founders, Hannah Frik, was the icing on the cake. We held an R-Ladies Meetup with R-Ladies Chicago to close the conference. Another event were I had the opportunity to see many awesome people in person for the first time.

I joined the R-Ladies Mexico chapters to share what we do at rOpenSci and news about R-Ladies.

I taught the Application Seminar 1 on Reproducible reporting with R, and the Application Seminar 2 on Agricultural Data Science for the AgroAnalytics Diploma of the Austral University, Argentina.

I got the Emerging Leader Ascent certification by Lead Belay - thanks NUMFocus for this opportunity.

I swam 17600 meters and crafted gifts for my friends - but not simultaneously.

Chiken, chiken baby and Chess rooks we build with my family for our friends

Chikens and Chess rook we build with my family for our friends.


October was for friendship and travels.

I finally went to Toronto and spent five fabulous days with Greg Wilson and his family. I meet Mike Hoye, I walked and biked, try a lot of new food, saw some of the autum colors, and cooked empanadas with Sadie. I participated in a workshop to discuss how to publish live interactive papers, organized by the University of Toronto.

After Canada, my family and I traveled to Montevideo, Uruguay, to participate in LatinR 2023. I was co-chair again. I also saw and meet in person many many great people. My children saw me give a talk and learned about the community I talk so much about. They also saw the sea and the beach for the first time.

My family returned to Argentina, but I traveled to Madrid for the rOpenSci meeting. I met my co-workers (Karthik, Noam, mark, Steffi, Jeroen, Maëlle and Juanjo) in person, and we had a very nice time together and thought about the rOpenSci future. It was very special to get to know Maëlle Salmon in person. We have known each other since 2017 because of R-Ladies. It is fantastic to work with and learn from her - and to interchange books.

Madrid at nigth, Montevideo sunset, Toronto downtown from above, and autum leaf colors, Chicago bean and wheel, Toronto aquarium, food and Chicago buildings

Ladscapes and food from Madrid, Montevideo, Toronto and Chicago

I moderated the The Carpentries 25th Aniversary Latin America Highlight and Alycia Crall, Oscar Mansiyana and I published our Mastodon Quick Start Guide to support everyone willing to move to Mastodon. The Carpentries left X, too.

I taught the Agroanalytics Application Seminar 3 on Remote Sensing and Modeling for The Austral University and reviewed RConsortium ISC grant proposals.

October was also for reading Guards, Guards by Terry Pratchett, and The Hench by Natalie Zina Walschots.


First community call in Spanish for R-OpenSci!! We finished the first bilingual version of our translation and localization guidelines and R packages to support localizations.

We wrapped up the project The Stars of R-Universe that I developed with my sister Alejandra Bellini. We also wrapped up the first cohort of the champions program.

The Master’s Degree in Data Mining of the UTN Regional Rosario, that I helped to build, got CONEAU’s accreditation. I taught the Machine Learning course for the Latin American Agroanalytics Diplo at UCES.

R-Ladies leave X. I attended Nova, GitHub Universe and I give a keynote at R Day Colombia. I was interviewd by the Embedded podcast: Dinosaurs, Pirates and Spaceships.

I swam 16200 meters and had chocolate cake for my birthday. It was also for reading The Girls with All the Gift by M.R. Carey, The Final Girl Support Group by Grady Hendrix, and Paladin’s Grace by Kingfisher.


I finished the year as I started, with the kickoff meetings the Champions Program. We have the first rOpenSci Meeting in Portuguese!! to discuss the localizacion of our rOpenSci Package Development Guide.

We lunch the project A Package a Day in Mastodon and Weekly Package Digest on LinkedIn to highlight rOpenSci’s suite of packages and use cases. We almost finished the onboarding of an amazing group of R-Ladies to the Global Team.

The Carpentries' Core Team layoff was hard and painful news. We have a new president in Argentina.

My eldest son doesn’t need speech therapy anymore and I swan 15400 meters.

Final numbers

I delivered 18 talks (1 keynote), participate in 3 interviews and moderate 1 event. I organize 12 events for rOpenSci Champions Program and Multilingual Publishing Project, six rOpenSci Community Calls, and two conferences. I taught 11 workshops, assisted in 3 and help to organize 2. I taught one undergraduate and seven graduate courses.

I wrote 39 blog post (12 bilingual), I worked in 3 translations (talks at NWIT and 2 books), 3 conference papers, 1 book chapter and 5 books (3 of them still work in progress).

I was part of 3 Steering Commitees (RConsortium ISC, Notebooks Now! and Research Software Camps), 1 Executive Council (The Carpentries) and 2 Board of Directors (The Carpentries & R-Ladies).

I read 12 books in English and swan 142 kilometers. I take ten international flights (that is 50% of all the international flights I took in my life)

According to GitHub Wrapped, I made 805 commitsand 1303 total contributions in 19 repositories. I also opened 177 issues and 272 pull requests, and did 165 reviews. My most productive day was Thursday (which is a vast improvement from last year, which was Saturday).

If you made it this far, thanks for reading. I wish you a great year 2024.

Posted on:
December 23, 2023
9 minute read, 1782 words
English community
See Also:
How to contribute to open projects and communities
Learning to code in 30 lessons
Citizen science and governance models