RES: [R] Developing R classes

Gilvan giljustino at
Fri Dec 31 01:18:41 CET 2004

I´m thankful for everyone who answered me. All the suggestions were very
useful to me.

I´m going to start with easy classes both in S3 and S4 models to understand
their differences. I will probably ask you again about new doubts :) or
share my experience with these models. By the way.. I found the package R.oo
which is used to write classes. I believe it is a easy way to create a
class. Someone has something against it ?

And to finish... I am student too Dave, and the books are expensive to me
too. Here in Brazil, I can pay for a good book about 25 USD. I saw those
programming books about 60 Usd!

Thanks again and have a nice 2005 !
Gilvan Justino
giljustino at

-----Mensagem original-----
De: David Kane [mailto:dave at] 
Enviada em: quarta-feira, 29 de dezembro de 2004 12:07
Para: Gilvan Justino
Cc: r-help at
Assunto: Re: [R] Developing R classes

Gilvan Justino writes:
 > Hi,
 > I´m trying to write some R classes but I din´t find documentation  >
enought to develop them. 

I have faced a similar problem. Here is the summary of what I have been able
to find (including some of the responses that you have already received)
with a focus on S4 classes since some people assert that all new development
should be done with them.

1) I think that the three best free resources for learning about S4 classes
are (in the order that I recommend you read them): (More or less Section 1.6 from
The Green Book.) (I think
that this version of the talk is more up-to-date than the one located at the
Bioconductor site at

  author       = {Thomas Lumley},
  title	       = {Programmers' Niche: A Simple Class, in {S3} and {S4}},
  journal      = {R News},
  year	       = 2004,
  volume       = 4,
  number       = 1,
  pages	       = {33--36},
  month	       = {June},
  url	       = {},

2) If you want to get serious with S4 classes, you may need to purchase
"Programming with Data" by John Chambers (aka The Green Book) and/or "S
Programming" by Venable and Ripley. I own both, but am interested in finding
material that is similarly comprehensive but free. Many of the people (read:
students) that I urge to use R do not have the sort of budgets for buying
books that I am lucky enough to have.

3) I found all of these references to be worth a read through.

Hope that helps,

Dave Kane

PS. I can't access the stat.auckland site right now but have been able to in
the past.

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