[R] list assignment syntax?

Bert Gunter gunter.berton at gene.com
Wed Apr 4 07:21:46 CEST 2012


The primary source of your problems appears to be:

"Unfortunately, for a generic programming language, R still lacks some sugar."

R is **not** a generic programming language, nor was it ever meant to
be one. Have you read Chambers's et al books? R was designed as a
language for data analysis and graphics, not as a general programming

This is not to say that some of your gripes/suggestions may not be
useful. I did not go through them in any detail, but a couple of them
at least seemed related to your misunderstanding above.


On Tue, Apr 3, 2012 at 4:29 PM, ivo welch <ivo.welch at gmail.com> wrote:
> I finally got around to posting my list of R gripes on a blog at
> http://ivo-welch.blogspot.com/2012/04/r-annoyances-and-gripes.html .
> I did put in some time, but I do not expect anyone to read it.  it was
> more for myself.  still, if you are curious, I would love to hear
> where I got it wrong and where I got it right.
> regards,
> /iaw
> ----
> Ivo Welch (ivo.welch at gmail.com)
> On Sat, Mar 31, 2012 at 8:35 AM, ivo welch <ivo.welch at gmail.com> wrote:
>> "what is the problem you are trying to solve?"
>> elegance, ease, and readability in my programs.
>> R has morphed from a data manipulation, graphics, and stats program
>> into my mainstay programming language.  most of this has been a huge
>> gain.  the addition of the parallel package was another recent big
>> gain for me.
>> some of it is a loss.  I particularly lament the fact that I cannot
>> turn off [silent] recycling (causing great hair loss on my end at
>> various occasions), no applicable error line number output on error
>> messages; and some syntax that could be nicer.    this was a prime
>> example of the latter.
>> regards, /iaw
>> [and then there are some impossible syntax desires, like in-string
>> substitution.  would it not be nice if I could write f("use $a\n")
>> instead of f(paste("use", a, "\n", sep="")) ?]
>> [some of my loss relates to my lack of understanding of some of the
>> magic behind R.  I just stumbled onto the fact that I can obtain loess
>> x variables with l$x; until then, I was trying to figure out how to
>> construct names and paste to match what unlist told me.   worse, I
>> have spotty memory.  you guys reading and helping out people like me,
>> plus the google archives here, are angels.  without your help, I could
>> not use R.]
>> ----
>> Ivo Welch (ivo.welch at gmail.com)
> ______________________________________________
> R-help at r-project.org mailing list
> https://stat.ethz.ch/mailman/listinfo/r-help
> PLEASE do read the posting guide http://www.R-project.org/posting-guide.html
> and provide commented, minimal, self-contained, reproducible code.


Bert Gunter
Genentech Nonclinical Biostatistics

Internal Contact Info:
Phone: 467-7374

More information about the R-help mailing list