[Rd] Objects in R

Jan T. Kim jtk at cmp.uea.ac.uk
Thu Apr 21 20:24:33 CEST 2005

On Thu, Apr 21, 2005 at 01:01:54PM -0400, Roger D. Peng wrote:
> One important thing to remember, which I think some more 
> experienced programmers may forget, is that R is two things---a 
> programming language and an *interactive* system for statistics 
> and graphics.  Maintaining the "interactive-ableness" of R may 
> have imposed certain design choices.  I personally think the 
> current S4 system of generics/methods is quite suitable for both 
> the "programming" and "interactive" sides of R.

That's certainly a valid point. A more "standard" kind of
object orientation does not necessarily impair interactive
use, however. Python is no less usable interactively than R,
for example.

Best regards, Jan

> Just $0.02.
> -roger
> Nathan Whitehouse wrote:
> >Hi,
> >  A few comments from a fairly experienced R user who
> >worked for several years on a R-based bioinformatics
> >analysis framework.
> >
> >  I don't want to misrepresent anyone's views, but...
> >
> >  There are real disadvantages to the
> >"objects-as-C-structs" and functions/methods which
> >"mutate" based on argument type. i.e. S4.
> >
> >  (1)Novices simply don't understand it.  Students are
> >trained in "standard" object-oriented technique and
> >this wonkish offshoot(puritanical functional
> >programming) just increases the information costs to
> >using R and thus decreases the demand.

 +- Jan T. Kim -------------------------------------------------------+
 |    *NEW*    email: jtk at cmp.uea.ac.uk                               |
 |    *NEW*    WWW:   http://www.cmp.uea.ac.uk/people/jtk             |
 *-----=<  hierarchical systems are for files, not for humans  >=-----*

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