[R] Reorder factor and address embedded escapes

David Winsemius dwinsemius at comcast.net
Fri Dec 10 21:31:21 CET 2010

On Dec 10, 2010, at 3:14 PM, Rob James wrote:

> I am trying to reorder a factor variable that has embedded escape  
> characters.  The data begins as a csv file with a factor that  
> includes embedded new line characters.  By the time read.table has  
> rendered it into a data frame, the variable now has an extra  
> backslash.
> e.g.
> "This\nLabel" in the csv becomes "This\\nLabel" in the data frame.
> So, I am trying to reorder the factor and deal with the introduction  
> of a secondary  \ .   Here's a small example:
> A = c("A\\nB", "C\\nD")
> test <-data.frame(A)
> str(test)
> test$reorderA <-factor(test$A, c("C\\nD", "A\\nB"))
> str(test)
> test$reorderB <-sub("\\\\n", "\n", test$reorderA)
> str(test)
> When sub is applied to the now-correctly ordered factor, it returns  
> to the default ordering.

Actually it returns a character vector rather than a factor.

> Suggestions?

Perhaps you should ask a question.

David Winsemius, MD
West Hartford, CT

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