[R] two questions for R beginners
cbeleites at units.it
Fri Feb 26 18:29:08 CET 2010
Dear Patrick (and all)
I'm now working with R a couple of years, before working mostly in Matlab
Lazy & impatient is both true for me :-)
> * What were your biggest misconceptions or
> stumbling blocks to getting up and running
> with R?
> * What documents helped you the most in this
> initial phase?
> I especially want to hear from people who are
> lazy and impatient.
> Feel free to write to me off-list. Definitely
> write off-list if you are just confirming what
> has been said on-list.
* It took me long to remember
getwd () and setwd () (instead of pwd and cd / chdir or the like)
* I still discover very useful functions that I would have needed for a long
time. Latest discoveries: mapply and ave
I knew aggregate. And was always a little angry that it needs a grouping list. I
even decided that the aggregate method for my hyperSpec class should work with
factors as well as with lists. Some day I read in this mailing list that ave
does what I need...
I like the crosslinks in the help (see also) very much. Maybe I rely too much on
them. So: not lazy today, I attach a patch for aggregate.Rd that adds the
seealso to ave.
Reading this mailing list once in a while gives me nice new ideas. However, > 50
emails / d is somewhat scary for me, so I read only occasionally.
* Vecorization: I like the *apply functions.
but I'd really appreciate a comprehensive page/vignette here.
I remember that it took me a while to realize that the rule for MARGIN in sweep
is "use the same number as in the apply that created the STATS"
* I never found the pdf manuals helpful (help pages are easier to access, and
there is nothing in the pdf that the help doesn't have.
At the beginning I expected the pdf manual to be something that the vignettes are.
* I did not arrive at a comfortable debugging cycle for a long time. But now
there's the debug package and setBreakpoint and I'm happy....
* As I now start teaching I notice that many students react to error messages
"uhh! an error!" (panic). Few realizing that the error message actually gives
information on what went wrong.
A list with common causes of different error messages would be helpful here, I
In case someone agrees: I started one at the Wiki:
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