[R] Re: The hidden costs of GPL software?

Tiago R Magalhaes tiago17 at socrates.Berkeley.EDU
Thu Nov 18 17:39:47 CET 2004

My background:

I am a biologist coming to R via Bioconductor. I have no computer 
background in computer sciences and only basic undergraduate training 
level in statistics.

I have used R with great pleasure and great pains. The most difficult 
thing is to know what functions to use - sometimes I know that one 
function is most likely available, but there's really no easy way to 
get it (yes, even going to the archives and reading the help files). 
I feel that more examples in the help files would definitely be a 
good way to fully understand the potencial of the functions. I know 
how difficult this is to do and how much of a time sink it must be.

One thing I defeinitely think would be a great improvement is to have 
a beefed up Object Explorer as Splus does. I think it's the great 
advantage of Splus when compared to R is to have much easier access 
to what type of object, col names, classes and so on there are. And 
how much easier it is to change all these attributes in Splus. I 
think R 2.0 in Mac did a lot to improve this, but I think that for 
someone that very frequently needs to know whether the object created 
turned out to be a vector or a list, the easy access to objects is 
very, very, very important and would be a great improvement in the 
ease of use of R.

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