[R] A comment about R:

Robert Chung rechung at gmail.com
Thu Jan 5 10:46:42 CET 2006

Roger Bivand wrote:
> Gabor Grothendieck wrote:
>> For example, consider this introductory session in Stata:
>> http://www.stata.com/capabilities/session.html
> 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?

Roger, I think your reproduction of the Stata session is excellent.

However, in a deeper sense, perhaps it's *too* faithful a replication. I
don't normally do analyses exactly the same way in R and in Stata, so
although it's possible to contort R into producing Stata-like output, why
would anyone want to? For example, in the sample Stata session, they run a
t-test before plotting any data. In R, I'd tend to plot early and test
hypotheses after. Rather that print out the top and bottom 5 mileage cars,
I might plot(weight,mpg,col=as.integer(foreign)) and identify() the
bivariate oddities. Rather than start into linear models, I might do some
lowess() lines. I'd probably do a splom() pretty early. Depending on what
I was doing, maybe I'd do something like

Stata and R are both fine products, but I sometimes wonder how the tools
one chooses affect the analyses one does.

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