[R] reducing learning curves?

Philippe Grosjean phgrosjean at sciviews.org
Thu Jan 26 11:15:08 CET 2006

Michael wrote:
> Hi all,
> Are there any R addon/pluggins with the following feature:
> (1) command history? even stores the command history many days ago? Like
> Matlab does?

See ?history, and also, menu entries File -> Load/Save history... in 
Rgui (you use R under windows, isn't it?). also, if you answer "Yes" at 
the question "Save workspace image?" when you quit R, the history of 
commands is saved and resored next time you start R from the same 

> (2) online help? for example, as I see it, the Rcmdr is a good companian for
> a newbie like me who just touched R for 1.5 days. I can use Rcmdr to guide
> me to learn the commands to use for data analysis. However, Rcmdr does not
> have online help reference for R commands. For example, I saw the command
> "abline" and I want to know how to use it, I have to copy/type it in
> R-console, and do "?abline" things, so that I can obtain help. But this is
> troublesome, does any editor offer online-help for commands, so I just need
> to hover my mouse on "abline" and then press F1 key then a help window will
> open automatically?

Well, it is not much work to type

 > ?abline

However, if you want a button that you can click to do so, then look at 
http://www.sciviews.org/Tinn-R. That editor is definitely for you!

Philippe Grosjean

> Thanks a lot!
> On 1/25/06, Michael <comtech.usa at gmail.com> wrote:
>>Hi all,
>>I am really new to the R language. I am a long time Matlab and C++ user
>>and I was "forced" to learn R because I am taking a statistics class.
>>I am seeking to reduce the learning curve to as smooth as possible.
>>Are there any addon/plug-in features that can reduce the learning curve,
>>for example, the following features can be very helpful for new learners:
>>1. Matlab-like command line auto-completion: Matlab has huge amount of
>>command and nobody is able to remember them off the head. So a nice feature
>>of Matlab command line is that I just need to type the first a few letters
>>and then I press "TAB" key, there will be a list of possible commands
>>popping up so I just need to select one. This helps a lot in terms of
>>learning for new comers. A more advanced command auto-completion is Visual
>>C++-like, which is implemented in program editor. It helps a lot while doing
>>2. A good IDE editor with embedded inline debugger: can be as good as
>>VC++, but also can be as simple as Matlab's debugger, which can breakpoint
>>and trace line-by-line... the editor can do syntax correction, syntax check,
>>syntax highlighting, code formatting, etc.
>>Could you please recommend some good addon/plugins that have the above
>>Could you please also suggest some tips/tools/tricks that can help me
>>reduce the learning curve?
>>Thank you very much!
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