[R] Brace highlighting in R for the PC?

Douglas Bates bates at stat.wisc.edu
Wed Sep 22 17:54:44 CEST 1999

"Alvaro A. Novo" <novo at uiuc.edu> writes:

> I once was a user of R for Windows and I really liked the input /
> output different coloring (eg. input in blue, output in red). Would
> it be difficult to implement this feature in R for Linux, say, under
> XTerm, ETerm, Kvt or any other "standard" terminal? Or, is it
> already implemented, (I read R-Notes and R Complements to Modern
> Applied Statistics w/ S+ and, as far as I remember, I did not find
> such feature described)?

> Would it be hard to implement? Maybe not, since for example ls
> --color already distinguishes different types of files... but my
> computer knowledge does not go that far.

Have you tried using ESS (emacs speaks statistics) as the front end to
R under Linux?  GNU emacs and Xemacs are both available for
practically any flavor of Linux and ESS can be used with either.  The
sources for ESS are available at

ESS provides many capabilities for R including syntax highlighting,
object name completion, modes to manipulate transcripts and source
files, ...

There is now a Debian ess package for the "unstable" version of the
Debian GNU/Linux distribution so you don't even have to read how to
install ESS.  Just install the r-base package, the emacs package, and
the ess package and you are ready to roll.  I'm not sure if there are
plans to make an RPM package of ESS for RedHat or SuSE.

(Note to Debian users: the ess package is still in the incoming queue
so it you look for it right away you won't find it.  I'm not sure why
it is stuck in the incoming queue.  Maybe we'll throw a copy of it
into the ESS web site.)
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