[R] Documentation General Comments

Bert Gunter gunter.berton at gene.com
Tue Apr 22 17:28:55 CEST 2008


I consider the documentation of Core R to be one of its great strengths: it
is terse (read: to the point), detailed, and accurate. I find it eminently
useful and helpful. Indeed, it was why I made the decision some years ago to
switch from S-Plus to R (I readily acknowledge that S-Plus may have improved
its docs since then -- haven't looked at it in years). While I understand
that it may not suit everyone -- learning styles differ, after all -- may I
at least say that there is one user out here who is appreciative of the hard
work and care that has gone into the documentation. Far FAR better than
anything I could do!

-- Bert Gunter

-----Original Message-----
From: r-help-bounces at r-project.org [mailto:r-help-bounces at r-project.org] On
Behalf Of Greg Snow
Sent: Tuesday, April 22, 2008 8:16 AM
To: Beck, Kenneth (STP); r-help at r-project.org
Subject: Re: [R] Documentation General Comments

This is a case of you can't please everyone.  A while back there was
some complaint that "Introduction to R" spent to much time on talking
about the different types of variables, just the opposite complaint of

There are several other sources of documentation (look under the books
link on the R homepage or the contributed documentation link on any CRAN
site, also browse through the newsletter).  For more in depth
information on variable types and object oriented programming in R you
may want to invest in a copy of "S Programming" by Venables and Ripley.

If you have specific questions (about data types, or other) then tell us
what you have read and what you still do not understand and you are more
likely to get a useful answer.  (also read the posting guide that is
referenced at the bottom of almost all posts to the list).

Gregory (Greg) L. Snow Ph.D.
Statistical Data Center
Intermountain Healthcare
greg.snow at imail.org
(801) 408-8111

> -----Original Message-----
> From: r-help-bounces at r-project.org 
> [mailto:r-help-bounces at r-project.org] On Behalf Of Beck, Kenneth (STP)
> Sent: Monday, April 21, 2008 3:56 PM
> To: r-help at r-project.org
> Subject: [R] Documentation General Comments
> I realize the R developers are probably overwhelmed and have 
> little time for this, but the documentation really needs some 
> serious reorganizaton.
> A good through description of basic variable types would help 
> a lot, e.g. the difference between lists, arrays, matrices 
> and frames. And, it appears there is some object-orientation 
> to R, but it is not complete. I can't, for instance find a 
> "metafile" method for a "recordedplot" type, using either the 
> variable direclty or the replayPlot() method. I am sorry to 
> post this, but I am really having trouble sorting out certain 
> methods in "R". The basic tutorial "Introduction to R" is so 
> basic, it hardly helps at all, then digging through 
> documentation is really an exercise in frustration. The 
> SimpleR is also so basic it is of little help other than to 
> just get started. I occasionally find answers in the mailing 
> list. See my later post on recordPlot for a good example. 

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