Win Data Science Competitions with Shiny

Written by Matt Dancho on August 12, 2020



Creating decision-making applications is a value-driver of data science teams in large organizations. Here's an inspiring use-case from one of our students & how data science education helped.


“I am incredibly excited to share with you all that re-work of my GitDiscoverer.com App won the Grand Prize in the 2nd Annual Shiny Contest hosted by RStudio PBC.

The reason I built it again is that I wanted to try out the skills I learned over the last year from Matt Dancho’s Shiny Developer with AWS course. Reaching here wouldn’t have been possible without Matt’s course and guidance. I highly recommend his course.”

-Raj Kumar, Data Scientists at C1X Inc


Raj Kumar has done it. He’s won the 2020 Shiny Competition. He competed against 220 amazing submissions and his Shiny App - called GitDiscoverer - was one of the top 5 winning submissions.

You might be wondering, how did Raj get here?

Raj’s story is inspiring.


Raj’s path to winning the 2020 Shiny Competition

Raj has been making progress learning Shiny over the past 2 years. I’ve been lucky enough to have him as a student, following his progress from his initial steps in Shiny to his now popular GitDiscoverer App.

2019 Git Discoverer (Gaining Experience)

Raj’s 1st attempt at building a competition app was for the 2019 Shiny competition. He had a great idea - making it easy to find trending GitHub repositories.

Raj's 2019 Git Discoverer Submission - A great idea gaining Raj experience


The 2019 Git Explorer submission didn’t win Raj any awards, but it helped build his confidence. Over the next year, Raj improved his application using many of the techniques he learned in Business Science University.

2020 Git Discoverer Submission (Competition Winner)

Raj performed a complete overhaul of his 2019 submission by adding in features including:

  • Redesigned User Experience (UX)
  • Dynamic Rendering of Github Repository Cards
  • Sort functionality by Trend, Stars, & Forks

Raj won the competition by integrating new features that allowed his app to shine.

Most importantly, Raj continued to improve from his 2019 submission by learning new techniques & iterating his design for the 2020 submission.

What Did Raj Learn Through Business Science?

NEW Application Architecture

Raj was able to leverage the application architecture structure and design that was developed through the Shiny Developer with AWS Course (DS4B 202A-R).

Application Architecture for Raj's 2020 Git Explorer


Here’s the application architecture from the Stock Analyzer that helped Raj extend his idea to a 2020 winning submission. The Stock Analyzer application is built in Shiny Developer with AWS (DS4B 202A-R).

Stock Analyzer - Application Architecture

Upgraded User Experience

Raj leveraged Bootstrap 3 to improve the user experience with cards and a UI components.

Dynamic UI for Raj's 2020 Git Explorer


Here’s the dynamic UI from the Application Library that helped Raj extend his idea to a 2020 winning submission. The Application Library “meta application” is built in Shiny Developer with AWS (DS4B 202A-R).

Application Library with Dynamic UI

Learn to build Shiny Applications

The secret to landing a job in data science - SHOW THAT YOU CAN PROVIDE BUSINESS VALUE!!!

This is what I teach - Business-First (Problem Solving) using Data Science.

If you are committed to learning data science for business, then Business Science University will give you the tools, strategies, and processes to unlock financial value for your organization.

The 4-Course R-Track System will help you, just like it helped Herb McCalla develop a decision-making application for Florida Power & Light.

Complete your transformation in 6-months or less with our 4-Course R-Track System.

See what our students are doing:

Student Success Stories

Real stories of success from our students applying their skills learned at Business Science University to get jobs and help their organizations!

Student Code Tutorials

Tutorials made by our students using their new skills learned at Business Science University!


Thank you for reading this Business Science Success Stories. I love to share how our students are applying their learning.

Matt Dancho
Founder, Business Science
Lead Data Science Instructor, Business Science University