[R] A comment about R:

Roger Bivand Roger.Bivand at nhh.no
Wed Jan 4 10:05:01 CET 2006

On Tue, 3 Jan 2006, Gabor Grothendieck wrote:

> On 1/3/06, Thomas Lumley <tlumley at u.washington.edu> wrote:
> > On Tue, 3 Jan 2006, Peter Dalgaard wrote:
> > > One thing that is often overlooked, and hasn't yet been mentioned in
> > > the thread, is how much *simpler* R can be for certain completely
> > > basic tasks of practical or pedagogical relevance: Calculate a simple
> > > derived statistic, confidence intervals from estimate and SE,
> > > percentage points of the binomial distribution - using dbinom or from
> > > the formula, take the sum of each of 10 random samples from a set of
> > > numbers, etc. This is where other packages get stuck in the
> > > procedure+dataset mindset.
> >
> > Some of these things are actually fairly straightforward in Stata. For
> In fact there are some things that are very easy
> to do in Stata and can be done in R but only with more difficulty.
> For example, consider this introductory session in Stata:
> http://www.stata.com/capabilities/session.html
> Looking at the first few queries,
> see how easy it is to take the top few in Stata whereas in R one would
> have a complex use of order.  Its not hard in R to write a function
> that would make it just as easy but its not available off the top
> of one's head though RSiteSearch("sort.data.frame") will find one
> if one knew what to search for.

Could I ask for comments on:

source(url("http://spatial.nhh.no/R/etc/capabilities.R"), echo=TRUE)

as a reproduction of the Stata capabilities session? Both the t test and
the chi-square from our side point up oddities. I didn't succeed on
putting fit lines on a grouped xyplot, so backed out to base graphics.
This could be Swoven, possibly using the RweaveHTML driver.

The three obvious world-view differences are functions returning objects
(but difficult to "see" when the default print method for the object shows
the object), nested function calls (on-the-fly objects), and multiple
data-sets (objects, typically data frames) simultaneously present in the 
workspace. Inserting objects() into the script would show the workspace 
growing, perhaps.


Roger Bivand
Economic Geography Section, Department of Economics, Norwegian School of
Economics and Business Administration, Helleveien 30, N-5045 Bergen,
Norway. voice: +47 55 95 93 55; fax +47 55 95 95 43
e-mail: Roger.Bivand at nhh.no

More information about the R-help mailing list