[R] Ubuntu, Revolutions, R

Andrew Choens andy.choens at gmail.com
Mon Oct 5 05:40:44 CEST 2009

For those who don't follow Ubuntu development carefully, the first Beta for the 
next Ubuntu was recently released, so I took my home system and upgraded to 
help out with filing bugs, etc. 

Just to be clear, I am not looking for help with the upgrade process. I've had 
R, and a few miscellaneous CRAN packages installed on this computer for years. 
Today, when I loaded an R session I had developed before the upgrade, I saw 
something new in my R "welcome message".
>R version 2.9.2 (2009-08-24)
>Copyright (C) 2009 The R Foundation for Statistical Computing
>ISBN 3-900051-07-0
>R is free software and comes with ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY.
>You are welcome to redistribute it under certain conditions.
>Type 'license()' or 'licence()' for distribution details.
>R is a collaborative project with many contributors.
>Type 'contributors()' for more information and
>'citation()' on how to cite R or R packages in publications.
>This is REvolution R version 3.0.0:
>the optimized distribution of R from REvolution Computing.
>REvolution R enhancements Copyright (C) REvolution Computing, Inc.
>Checking for REvolution MKL:
 >- REvolution R enhancements not installed.
>For improved performance and other extensions: apt-get install revolution-r

The last part, about this being the "enhanced" version of R was . . . 
unexpected.  I have heard of this company before and now I've spent some time 
on their website. Looking at my installation, Ubuntu did not install any of 
the REvolution Computing components, although R now basically thows a warning 
every time I start it.

My question(s) for the community is this (pick any question(s) you like to 
        Should I install the REvolution Computing packages? 
        Do these packages really make R faster? 
        Are these packages stable? 
        What are your experiences with REvolution Computing software?

I am interested in hearing from members of the community, REvolution Computing 
employees/supporters (although please ID yourself as such) and most anyone 
else. I can see what they say on their website, but I'm interested in getting 
other opinions too.


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