[R] why "R"?

(Ted Harding) Ted.Harding at nessie.mcc.ac.uk
Sun Mar 21 00:30:28 CET 1999

On 20-Mar-99 Friedrich Leisch wrote:
>>>>>> On Sat, 20 Mar 1999 21:45:20 +0800,
>>>>>> Jose Ramon G Albert (JRGA) wrote:
> JRGA> When I tell several people here in the Philippines
> JRGA> about the wonders of using R, one of
> JRGA> the things I am asked is why is it called "R"?
> JRGA> Does it have anything to do with
> JRGA> the fact that the original writers of the
> JRGA> R code were Robert Gentlemaan & Ross Ihaka?
> yes, and additionally it's the letter before S in the alphabet :-)

Those few of us in a position to have encountered it may recall a
mathematical programming language called MIRFAC, which allegedly stood
for "Mathematics In Recognisable Form Automatically Compiled".

It was more plausibly suspected of having been named after the brightest
star (alpha Persei, aka "Mirfak") in the constellation of Perseus, rather
than the second brightest (beta Persei, aka "Algol").

So it wouldn't be the first time ... I hope, however, that R fares
better than MIRFAC did viz-a-viz its antagonym (to coin a word).

Best wishes to all,

E-Mail: (Ted Harding) <Ted.Harding at nessie.mcc.ac.uk>
Date: 20-Mar-99                                       Time: 23:30:28
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