Talk:R (programming language)

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Former good article nominee R (programming language) was a Engineering and technology good articles nominee, but did not meet the good article criteria at the time. There are suggestions below for improving the article. Once these issues have been addressed, the article can be renominated. Editors may also seek a reassessment of the decision if they believe there was a mistake.
November 4, 2010 Good article nominee Not listed
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R and Scheme[edit]

I don't understand the reference to Scheme. R's semantics are derived from S's not Scheme's semantics. Is the sentence in question saying that S's semantics are derived from Scheme's? S and R do indeed support functional programming, but I think it's misleading to say that the semantics of R or S are derived from Scheme. S (and hence R, which is an open source implementation of S) differ from Scheme in so many ways that I think the reference to Scheme should be removed from the page. Do others agree?

The main way in which R's semantics are similar to Scheme (and different from those of S-PLUS) is the evaluation model for nested function definitions, as explained in lexical scoping section of the R FAQ. - Avenue 08:23, 4 December 2005 (UTC)
Lexical scoping into nested functions is not really what I first think of when someone mentions Scheme. Perhaps Scheme was the first language to do it thus, but these days most languages with nested functions work that way. Mentioning Scheme gives me the expectataion of, say, having continuations in R, or the lisp-ish "everything is a list" idea, or scheme-like macros. None of that is in R (as far as I can see). I think ScheThe me is misleading. Subtilior 20:35, 21 January 2007 (UTC)
Saying "everything is a vector" in R might be too strong, but it isn't far wrong. Your other expectations are probably much more of a stretch, but still have an element of truth as far as I understand. Our comment about Scheme is attributed to R's developers, and I think it reflects their position, at least as expressed back in Ihaka and Gentleman (1996): "The resulting language [R] is very similar in appearance to S, but the underlying implementation and semantics are derived from Scheme. In fact, we implemented the language by first writing an interpreter for a Scheme subset and then progressively mutating it to resemble S." Would you be happier if this was discussed later in the article (maybe in the Development section), rather than in the lead paragraph? -- Avenue 14:19, 22 January 2007 (UTC)
I guess the "is considered by its developers" clause is enough of a get out. I don't really have a problem. Subtilior 06:31, 5 February 2007 (UTC)

"Everything [in S] is an object." (page 24 Chambers (2008)) "In the S language references to ordinary objects are only through names." which could imply that R does not use numeric pointers (page 24 Chambers (2008)) As with Wikipedia, relying only on names can result in ambiguity or in R's case one name masking another. R and S both use the first names they find, but R has an additional place to look. S looks in the function itself and in the global environment. R adds an intermediate "function environment." One of the practical uses of the function environment is it enables the use of Namespaces. Each package can have its own namespace. See Chambers (2008), "Software for Data Analysis: Programming with R" pages 24, 120, 126 & 460-462 Jim.Callahan,Orlando (talk) 22:45, 9 July 2010 (UTC)

R was initially inspired by Scheme rather than S, see (p. 16 on "The initial language") on how it initially looked like. Lebatsnok (talk) 12:17, 22 March 2011 (UTC)


Shouldn't this be "R programming environment"? We already have an article about the programming language S Btyner 20:11, 3 January 2006 (UTC)

The S language is now more a small family of languages or dialects than a single language, so I think that the "R programming language" is a distinct concept. And the current title does follow the general guideline given in Wikipedia:Naming conventions (languages). However I'm not entirely happy with it either. I would like the title to reflect the statistical emphasis of the language/environment, e.g. "R statistical computing environment". -- Avenue 01:41, 4 January 2006 (UTC)
The full name of R is "The R Project for Statistical Computing." Why not just use the actual name? Abel (talk) 17:49, 6 November 2015 (UTC)
Because the convention with programming languages is either $SIMPLE_NAME or $SIMPLE_NAME_(programming_language). Look at C or C++ or, well, S. Ironholds (talk) 18:47, 6 November 2015 (UTC)
Added the actual name to the article text with citation. Hopefully that will be good enough, even though that is not really what Avenue was looking for. Abel (talk) 20:06, 6 November 2015 (UTC)
The first sentence now says 'R is a programming language and software environment for statistical computing and graphics, called "The R Project for Statistical Computing."' I think this is wrong, and that the R Project is distinct from the R language/environment itself. This seems to be supported by the source you cite, which says on page 423 that "R software [...] is available at no cost from the R Project for Statistical Computing". Perhaps the article should say more about the R project, but it shouldn't say the project is the language. --Avenue (talk) 04:17, 15 November 2015 (UTC)
"R programming language" is literally a synonym for "The R Project for Statistical Computing."Abel (talk) 03:03, 16 November 2015 (UTC)
Agreed with User:Avenue. The project is the whole effort around the language, not the language itself. A programming language cannot sponsor conferences and a journal...! --Macrakis (talk) 03:57, 16 November 2015 (UTC)
It is common in open-source software development to have an umbrella "project" to coordinate efforts to develop one or more pieces of software. I agree that "R" is the name of the programming language/environment, and "The R Project for Statistical Computing" is the open-source project that develops it. They are not synonymous. - dcljr (talk) 04:48, 16 November 2015 (UTC)
According to the project itself, the language is "R: A Language and Environment for Statistical Computing" while the project is "R Foundation for Statistical Computing." Abel (talk) 21:26, 18 November 2015 (UTC)
I disagree. The official name of the language is R. The part after the colon merely expands on it to explain what it is, but is not part of the name of the language. Tayste (edits) 00:01, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
In the introduction, it says "R is a language and environment for statistical computing and graphics". It doesn't say "R: A Language and Environment for Statistical Computing is a language and environment for statistical computing and graphics". Tayste (edits) 00:05, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
To cite R in publications use:

  R Core Team (2015). R: A language and environment for statistical
  computing. R Foundation for Statistical Computing, Vienna, Austria.

A BibTeX entry for LaTeX users is

    title = {R: A Language and Environment for Statistical Computing},
    author = {{R Core Team}},
    organization = {R Foundation for Statistical Computing},
    address = {Vienna, Austria},
    year = {2015},
    url = {},

We have invested a lot of time and effort in creating R, please cite it
when using it for data analysis. See also ‘citation("pkgname")’ for
citing R packages.

— Preceding unsigned comment added by Id4abel (talkcontribs) 2015-11-19T13:24:50

Many citation styles (e.g. APA) separate the title and subtitle with a colon. This is a great example where "R" is the title, and "A Language and Environment for Statistical Computing" is the subtitle. Without the subtitle, this citation would show only a 1-character title, which looks odd. +mt 01:17, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
Very true. The R Core Team, the people who maintain R, who run the R Foundation for Statistical Computing, say that the name is "R: A Language and Environment for Statistical Computing" and even tell people to cite "R: A Language and Environment for Statistical Computing" not "R." The above code is what R itself says we should use as a citation, also "R: A Language and Environment for Statistical Computing." Abel (talk) 02:19, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
Note that phrase, "when using it for data analysis". That citation is clearly intended for authors of academic and technical papers who have used R to analyze and/or visualize their data. It doesn't necessarily mean we should consider that the "actual" name of the software. You started out claiming that "'R programming language' is literally a synonym for 'The R Project for Statistical Computing.'" Now you're saying, "The R Core Team… say that the name is 'R: A Language and Environment for Statistical Computing'". If you find a third name associated with the software in some other context, will that become its "actual name" in your eyes? Now, granted, if you wanted to point out in the article that the R Core Team asks authors who use R in their publications to cite the software using the title R: A Language and Environment for Statistical Computing, that would technically be correct (finally) — but is it notable anough to include in an encyclopedia article? - dcljr (talk) 06:12, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
Originally, I was wrong. I thought the project and the program itself had the same name. It turns out, the project is The R Project for Statistical Computing and the program is R: A Language and Environment for Statistical Computing. I call it R and I imagine that most everyone else calls it R. That does not change the fact that the R Core Team says that the actual name of the program is R: A Language and Environment for Statistical Computing and that the project is called The R Project for Statistical Computing. Everyone refers to the Wealth of Nations as Wealth of Nations, but that does not change the fact that the actual name is An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations.Abel (talk) 17:10, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
The name of the program is simply R. The subtitle in the citation is a useful description, but I don't regard the subtitle as part of the program name. If you think otherwise, you will need to build a consensus. +mt 19:55, 19 November 2015 (UTC)
Okay, so Wikipedia is not a publication.[1] Then what exactly is it? Abel (talk) 22:19, 19 November 2015 (UTC)


  1. ^ Currently defined by Wikipedia as, "To publish is to make content available to the general public."
Red herring. - dcljr (talk) 03:37, 22 November 2015 (UTC)
Either Wikipedia is a publication in which case we are blatantly ignoring the wishes of the R Core Team, or Wikipedia is not a publication in which case the wishes of the R Core Team concerning publications are not applicable. Abel (talk) 06:31, 22 November 2015 (UTC)
The R FAQ we're linking to also has specific instructions about citing that document, which we seem to be "ignoring", so I've changed the citation(s) accordingly. The article now mentions the citation the R Core Team requests authors use (quoted above), which I hope will be acceptable to everyone. - dcljr (talk) 09:36, 6 December 2015 (UTC)


Even Free Software articles suffer from advertitis on here. I'll try to tidy this later. Chris Cunningham 00:43, 3 August 2006 (UTC)

You added the comment, after a line discussing R's interface, "what are we discussing here? The compiler? The IDE? This line can probably be removed if it's just the compiler". Although there are a couple of experimental compilers, R is typically run as an interpreted language in an interactive session. Submit a line of code (or maybe a few lines), read the output, submit some more, and so on. Some of the usual "programming language" connotations don't really apply here, which is one reason why it might be good to change the article's title (see above). -- Avenue 11:20, 3 August 2006 (UTC)
Right - in that case a description of the normal runtime usage would be a great thing to elaborate on. Chris Cunningham 12:01, 3 August 2006 (UTC)


Tha anonymous criticism about the speed of R is rebutted by the benchmark results at This is also explained earlier in the article. The criticisms are thus removed. Den fjättrade ankan 15:25, 31 August 2006 (UTC)

But see - Ross Ihaka's example with data frames slowing down the speed. + The benchmark you cite has comparisons with matlab and the like but not with e.g. python or java, and definitely not with c and fortran. The latter are relevant because the speed-critical parts of r packages typically get implemented in c (sometimes in fortran). Lebatsnok (talk) 12:22, 22 March 2011 (UTC)

Quick tutorial[edit]

Why was it eliminated? I had a hard time finding how to start using R. I still do - it seems that every help file or documentation is directed either to those that know nothing or to those that know everything. Albmont 01:35, 30 September 2006 (UTC)

While your description of R documentation is astute (unfortunately), WP essentially is not a venue for "how to" information. It is a venue for "what is" information. Note I didn't delete it (nor would I), but if called on a user vote, would agree to delete for that reason. Baccyak4H 02:41, 30 September 2006 (UTC)

I had learned SAS programming in school, but cannot afford to purchase it, so was very happy to find R,..., until I tried to learn how to use it. There is a real need to have a bare bones, easy introduction to R. At present, what I find as free information on how to use it drops me in the middle of a thick forest. If I could vote, I would say put back that Quick tutorial.

I'm in the same situation, and have found R a difficult study as well. Purchasing the Crawley (2005) book cited in the main article was something of a breakthrough for me. A set of exercises for the book are freely available on the author's website, and have some utility even unaccompanied by the book.
--Belgrano 14:48, 8 February 2007 (UTC)

Tutorials are not exactly encyclopedic, and should be kept off of here, but feel free to add to (the barely started) B:R Programming wikibook. The main R page [1]] has some good links to other tutorials and resources (much better than wiki-land has to offer). It's not the prettiest of website, but it is very resourceful. +mwtoews 17:58, 8 February 2007 (UTC)

Mege CRAN into R (programming language)[edit]

There really isn't much to say about CRAN in a separate article. At most, it could use a small section in the R article (say R (programming language)#Comprehensive R Archive Network?). +mwtoews 18:28, 6 December 2006 (UTC)

Done. +mwtoews 21:03, 29 December 2006 (UTC)

The article CRAN has been brought back to life. I suggest again to merge it back to this article, for the same reasons at the top of this section. +mt 03:49, 10 July 2007 (UTC)

I agree. -- Avenue 06:46, 10 July 2007 (UTC)
Done, and I double checked the four language interwiki "CRAN" articles, which all link to R (programming language)#CRAN for the "en" edition. +mt 21:05, 10 July 2007 (UTC)


I`ve been trying to find the GUi for R but I can`t find them. Anyone can put a link when it say that graphical user interfaces are available? where, thanks ;)--ometzit<col> 00:33, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

A few are listed in the Productivity tools section. And here's a more [comprehensive list. -- Avenue 01:52, 13 February 2007 (UTC)

Naming motivation[edit]

The article currently states "It was originally created by Ross Ihaka and Robert Gentleman (hence the name R)..." My understanding was that the name "R" was chosen to parallel "S", which it is a dialect of, roughly speaking. While I suppose both could be true (that is, it is not named "T"), a citation would be nice here. Baccyak4H (Yak!) 15:56, 23 February 2007 (UTC)

Better late than never — done ! Schutz 16:10, 31 July 2007 (UTC)
Excellent. And what a source too ;-) Baccyak4H (Yak!) 18:30, 21 August 2007 (UTC)

I've understood from Ihaka's papers / slides from his webpage that (a) R started as a separate project, initially unrelated to S, and (b) gradually became more similar to S, and (c) the name referred to Robert and Ross rather than S. But see Lebatsnok (talk) 12:27, 22 March 2011 (UTC)

Robert Gentleman[edit]

The internal link (under the emblem) for Robert Gentleman directs itself to another person with the same name ( a baseball player). I am temporarily going to remove the link until a seperate article/disambiguation page is created. Grokmenow 15:24, 16 July 2007 (UTC)

de-facto standard[edit]

This claim of R being the de-facto standard for statistics computing is backed up by the article "USING THE R STATISTICAL COMPUTING ENVIRONMENT TO TEACH SOCIAL STATISTICS COURSES" which I have found only two citations from in Google, both in papers using R. Now this is a bit of a strong claim to make and I think it deserves a more credible source. Frenchwhale 16:01, 31 July 2007 (UTC)

I'll agree that the statement is too bold with no reliable sources. I've been looking around Google Scholar for any indication of "statistics software" and "standard" or "de-facto", and my results are very mixed. Basically all the statistical programs you can think of (SAS, Microsoft Excel, Sigma Plot, SPSS, Minitab, Stata, as well as S-PLUS and R) have been touted as "standard", which leads me to think that these claims are POVs. I don't think any of these programs can really be considered "de facto" at this moment (except for certain niches, such as biostatistics). I think it is safe to say that R has an expanding user-base as suggested by the posting rate on the help list, and the increasing number of contributed packages. +mt 18:55, 31 July 2007 (UTC)
In technical applications, the main reason that R is used is simply because it is free. In bioinformatics, its use is widespread among researchers and the private sector simply because it would be cost-prohibitive for large private organizations (i.e. pharmaceutical companies) to fork out the cash for licences for other programs such as SAS or Matlab. I have no references for this, just years of personal experience working with these people. This article in general is rather unbalanced - for instance there is no discussion of the limitations or criticisms of R (articles on the other software have this). A major fault with R is its inability to efficiently handle for-loops, resulting in the need for clumsy workarounds, something that should be mentioned here. - 52 Pickup 07:20, 15 August 2007 (UTC)
The charge that R cannot handle for-loops efficiently is just ridiculous. It is an interpreted language, but that is by design. It is going to be just as efficient with its use of for-loops as any other interpreted language. There is a widespread misconception that the various functional substitutes for for-loops (Such as apply, lapply or sapply) are more efficient but those misconceptions are created by people unskilled in the proper use of the language. The area where efficiency can sometimes be achieved over for-loops with is the proper use of the indexing system. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:54, 22 November 2010 (UTC)
Actually, the main reason it's used is that its development (bug fixing, new feature incorporation, etc.) is far faster and more transparent than say the products listed above. Of course, that is a consequence of its open-source status, which also implies its price. That said however, saying "de-facto standard" or the like without sourcing is original research as well as POV. Saying "mainstream" or something similar would be more defensible, IMO. But I have to object to a criticisms discussion for this or even any software (with possible high profile and noteworthy exceptions like Tufte's criticisms of PowerPoint or Fateman's criticisms of Mathematica). Perhaps limitations, or comparisons with others, may be more appropriate. Any software product is designed to do certain things, but certainly not all things; saying "well it can't do X" seems highly unencyclopedic. Baccyak4H (Yak!) 12:47, 15 August 2007 (UTC)
While I agree with the fact that it is widely used (personnal experience), I think that calling a de facto standard is unjustified. Adding Template:Verify credibility to the source (Fox, John and Andersen, Robert (January 2005). "Using the R Statistical Computing Environment to Teach Social Statistics Courses" (PDF). Department of Sociology, McMaster University. Retrieved 2006-08-03.  ) which has not been peer-reviewed and thus only reflects the opinion of its two authors. I don't know if another tag would be more appropriate. If so, please edit it. If no other reference can be found, we should seriously consider removing this claim. Calimo (talk) 17:57, 7 December 2008 (UTC)
Here one (peer reviewed?) recently published book that uses de facto in the first paragraph of the book abstract. +mt 07:20, 8 December 2008 (UTC)
Another supporting quote, from the "Statistical software" entry in Wiley's Encyclopedia of Statistical Sciences, 2006: "R is currently one of our languages of choice for the development of research-level software." A very similar paper by the same authors seems to be available here.
The discussion above does not seem to distinguish clearly between two questions: whether R is a de facto standard for statistical software development, or for statistical analysis. I'd agree with the former, but not (as yet) the latter. Our article makes the former claim, but about S, not just R. (R is one dialect of S). -- Avenue (talk) 22:10, 8 December 2008 (UTC)
Good point. I don't think it is even mainstream for non-statistician and non-programmer, who prefer graphical tools such as SPSS or GraphPad Prism (personal experience).
Maybe we could remove the controversial de facto and go on with something like R is a mainstream and widely used tool for statistical and data analysis software development[3 or 4 references cited] Calimo (talk) 12:52, 9 December 2008 (UTC)
I think the distinction is worth retaining in our article, although it should probably be made clearer. De facto doesn't seem controversial to me regarding statistical software development. Matlab, SAS and Stata are niche players in comparison. I think the articles currently listed on the Journal of Statistical Software web site are telling; one uses Matlab, one uses SAS/IML, and the other five use R. Not only that, but the authors of three of the five do not even feel it's necessary to mention R in the title. This is simply assumed. -- Avenue (talk) 16:08, 11 December 2008 (UTC)

Personally, claiming that something is de-facto standard based on a SINGLE publication is totally wrong. If it is a true de-facto standard, a dozen publications should exist. The publication is a false-positive; there are plenty of statistical tools (including Matlab's statistical toolbox, SAS etc. ) Dimacq (talk) 19:46, 15 November 2011 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:R gui on os x.png[edit]

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BetacommandBot (talk) 20:00, 26 November 2007 (UTC)

GNU R[edit]

What is GNU R (redirect)? --Abdull (talk) 16:48, 8 February 2008 (UTC)


Might be nice to see a comparison between R and S-Plus in this page. Message me if you would be willing to help put something rudimentary together. Swism (talk) 15:17, 25 February 2008 (UTC) There is an R FAQ on this topic: —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:57, 22 November 2010 (UTC)

Merger proposal[edit]

Maybe there should be a distinction between R as a programming language and the capabilities of R in statistical analysis, but we would need to know the intentions of expansion for the "R Statistics" article. Presently the contents seems very similar. Melcombe (talk) 09:23, 13 June 2008 (UTC)

I think it should be ok to go ahead and merge. There isn't enough content at this point - we can always split off again later. I'll get onto this if no one else is doing it.--Fangz (talk) 15:31, 14 June 2008 (UTC)

Split Features[edit]

I would like to separate the "Features" section into "Statistical Features" and "Programming Features." The reason is that a computer science student studying computer languages needs a different description R than a student trying to apply statistical techniques as part of a course. The statistics student wants to get to whether R has the method (OLS, ANOVA, GLM, Survival Curves) they need ASAP; while the computer science student wants to classify the language (command line interpreter with functional and object oriented features) and perhaps have a description of data structures (matrices and lists), assignment statement ("<-" instead of "=") conditional statements (IF) and iteration statements (loops). —Preceding unsigned comment added by Jim.Callahan,Orlando (talkcontribs) 17:16, 5 July 2010 (UTC) Jim.Callahan,Orlando (talk)


Why do the explanations for the Milestones stop after 2.4.1 ? It does not make much sense to simply name version numbers. --Asdirk (talk) 11:11, 8 July 2008 (UTC)

Hi Dirk! Done. Greetings from Vienna. -- Alfie (talk) 23:47, 8 July 2008 (UTC)
This section is becoming ungainly and could benefit from major summarization. For example, the repeated notes about bug fixes and "maintenance/development release" are not particularly interesting. Even many of the technical changes (tcltk event loop with X11, etc) are not relevant for an introductory article to R. More interesting might be to note that version 2.7 was the 10th anniversary of R. Instead of repeatedly referring to mailing list articles with the changes, why not just have one link to the NEWS file: Have a look at the historical timeline section of the S-Plus page or the history section of the S page for ideas. -- kwstat. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:54, 9 July 2008 (UTC)
I started this section a while back to focus only on the big changes, and skipped releases that didn't offer anything of significance. I think we can cut out a few versions, as suggested above. Of course, it is sometimes a bit difficult to gauge what is important and significant from the releases. +mt 18:48, 9 July 2008 (UTC)
Hi kwstat! Start slicing. ;-) -- Alfie (talk) 21:49, 9 July 2008 (UTC)


I don't think Kate has a special mode for R. Refer to :

Mrfebruary (talk) 11:51, 8 July 2008 (UTC)

It looks like it has a R syntax highlighting module: You can find it from the referenced page [2] Calimo (talk) 16:50, 7 December 2008 (UTC)


I've removed Statistica from the list of interfaces to R, since, AFAIK, there are no bridges bewteen these two programs...

If I'm wrong, please revert. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:12, 19 August 2008 (UTC)

Yes there is a bridge Lebatsnok (talk) 12:29, 22 March 2011 (UTC)

The reference to Tibco Spotfire appears (to me) to be advertising. Of more general interest would be that the leading statistical and data base vendors: SAS, SPSS and Oracle have all implemented interfaces to R. Jim.Callahan,Orlando (talk)

Portal:Free software selected article: R[edit]

Just to let you know. The purpose of selecting an article is both to point readers to the article and to highlight it to potential contributors. It will remain on the portal for at least a week. The previous selected article was Sugar (GUI) - the OLPC's desktop interface which has been spun-off.

For other interesting free software articles, you can take a look at the archive of PFS's selectees. Gronky (talk) 02:16, 8 January 2009 (UTC)

The new selectee is Freenet - an anonymous filesharing system. Gronky (talk) 19:38, 13 April 2009 (UTC)

Example of syntax[edit]

New to R, I was looking for a very simple example of syntax. Would a short example like this improve the article:

> x <- c(1,2,3,4,5,6)   # Create ordered collection
> y <- x^2              # Square the elements of x
> mean(y)               # Calculate arithmic mean of y 
[1] 15.16667
> var(y)                # Calculate variance (unbiased estimate) 
[1] 178.9667

User:Nillerdk (talk) 10:40, 13 February 2009 (UTC)

Remember that Wikipedia is not an instruction manual, and that R implements the S language. Perhaps a simple example of the S programming language could be included in that article, but not for tutorial purposes. A link to a tutorial might be permitted. -- Schapel (talk) 18:40, 13 February 2009 (UTC)
A realistic, multiline example would definitely be helpful in this article (as in other programming language articles); "Hello, world" doesn't really tell you much. An example is not the same thing as a tutorial or an instruction manual. For that matter, an overview of the language's syntax and semantics would be useful as well. Of course, it should not be at the level of detail you'd find in a reference manual.
R is indeed largely based on S, and WP shouldn't repeat itself. But for now neither article includes much information about the language(s). We can figure out how to organize it better after we write it.... --macrakis (talk) 21:11, 13 February 2009 (UTC)
Wikipedia is certainly not an instruction manual, but also not a classical printed encyclopedia with very constrained space and no room for examples. And an example of syntax (even "Hello, World") gives the reader (at the very least) a feeling for the language which enabled him/her to understand the more elaborate description in the text better. Can you maybe suggest a better example of syntax than the one I came up with? I think some example should really be there. User:Nillerdk (talk) 23:32, 13 February 2009 (UTC)
Hello, World is not very informative in R:
> "Hello, World"
"Hello, World"
I would submit that some code might suggest how unusual S4 objects are for programing. i.e. Something about how summary is called or plot. PDBailey (talk) 03:16, 14 February 2009 (UTC)
I've added a simple example along those lines. -- Avenue (talk) 02:21, 23 April 2009 (UTC)

We need to split "Features" as noted above. R is a hybrid it is both a collection of statistical packages comparable to SAS or SPSS and a programming language comparable to Fortran, C#, APL or Matlab. As a programming language R is a command line interpreter similar to BASIC or Python, type 2+2 at the prompt and press enter and the computer replies with 4.

   > 2+2
  [1] 4

But, the example is deceptively simple because R implements matrices, so R can from the command line add or even invert matrices without loops. R's data structures include scalars, vectors, matrices, data frames (similar to tables in a relation database) and lists. The R object system has been extended by package authors to define objects for regression models, time-series and geo-spatial coordinates.

R supports functional programming with functions and object oriented programming with generic functions. Jim.Callahan,Orlando (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 17:48, 5 July 2010 (UTC).

Following the suggestion, I added a third example explaining some of the language syntax in function declaration for R. (talk) 21:51, 10 October 2013 (UTC)

External links[edit]

I removed lots of external links, following WP:External links guidance to keep them at minimum. I added a link to Dmoz where the selection of good links should already have been done. I also removed "sources" that were actually hidden external links to home pages of various packages, not secondary sources. Calimo (talk) 07:22, 4 June 2009 (UTC)

WP:EL is still valid. Please do not transform this article into a linkfarm. If you think an EL is especially relevant and conforms to WP:EL, please discuss here first. Calimo (talk) 07:11, 25 August 2009 (UTC)
Sorry I didn't see your 4 June messsage before reverting. --macrakis (talk) 13:47, 25 August 2009 (UTC)
I'm reintroducing some of the productivity tools. For example, someone removed the links to the R search engines. That was extremely useful. By removing all of that content, you made the article much less valuable--hardly worth directing students here now. --Anthon.Eff (talk) 20:05, 20 September 2009 (UTC)
Remember that wikipedia is not a manual or a textbook for students. It is an encyclopedia Please see Wikibooks for that. (You may or may not have noted that there is a link to a book called R programming in the external link section) To make the article really valuable, you need to enter this information in the body of the text (think about a section "Finding information about R"). NOT in the external links section.
Take a look at what I restored--it was NOT in the external links section.--Anthon.Eff (talk) 19:40, 2 October 2009 (UTC)
Yes, exactly, they weren't and that's the problem, because WP:EL states that external links should normally not be in the body of the article but in a separate section. Calimo (talk) 07:46, 10 October 2009 (UTC)
Additionally, Wikipedia:External links advises agains multiple linkings to the same site. I see that is linked multiple times. We should really avoid that. I believe the homepage is sufficient and contains links to all the sub-projects. Calimo (talk) 06:32, 2 October 2009 (UTC)
"We should really avoid that." Huh? Why? On some articles, like this one about an enormous open-source project, it makes perfect sense to link multiple times. No one is puffing their product or their website here.--Anthon.Eff (talk) 19:40, 2 October 2009 (UTC)
Why? Just because wikipedia is not a manual: Wikibooks is. The R progamming book would be a perfect place to add these practical external links. Not wikipedia. But it looks like I'm the only one to think that. Calimo (talk) 07:46, 10 October 2009 (UTC)
Right now there is a link to "New Zealand", and to "Operating Systems", but the link to R-Forge has been removed. There are links to C, Fortran, but not to CRAN. I just don't get it. If a user comes to this page to read about R, are they more likely to want to know where to find information about New Zealand or R-Forge?--Statr (talk) 19:29, 5 October 2009 (UTC)

Larger font makes Examples section's code and graphic overlap[edit]

If you make the font significantly larger the Examples section's code and graphic overlap. -- Dougher (talk) 02:07, 29 July 2009 (UTC)

Adding a link to "R-bloggers"[edit]

Hi all,

I built a website that aggregates many blogs (about 30 35 at the moment) who writes about R, called:

To my knowledge, it is the only place there is to find this list of R bloggers (and get updates of their posts).

Since I built the website, I won't add the link myself. But still, is it important enough in order to be added as a link to the article about R?


Talgalili (talk) 14:35, 7 January 2010 (UTC)

(disclaimer: I read that blog) As an external link, this might be appropriate. I would support it more strongly if this article had a problem with many individual blogs getting added indiscriminantly, but I am not sure that problem exists. Nonetheless, while I am hesitant in general to add such pages to articles, I would not object. Aside, kudos for revealing your involvement and asking for community support first. Baccyak4H (Yak!) 16:50, 7 January 2010 (UTC)
Thank you Baccyak for the support and the kind words! Best, Talgalili (talk) 22:27, 8 January 2010 (UTC)
Dear Talgalili,
My opinion is that there are already too much links per WP:EL, and that most of them should be removed (they could possibly appear on Wikibooks, though). Links to blogs should normally be avoided according to section 4, item 11 of WP:EL, but so is linking to multiple pages of the same website (section 1 item 4 of WP:EL), manufacturers/suppliers (4.14), open wikis (4.12), etc. Most of the current links fall under one of these criteria.
I tried enforcing that guideline previously (see two sections above), but I didn't get a consensus. So just ignore all rules as do the other editors of this article and many others, and go on with it. Keep in mind that someone may remove it later.
Calimo (talk) 10:56, 9 January 2010 (UTC)
PS : kudos as well for disclosing your conflict of interest. Wikipedia would certainly be better if all editors were behaving as you did.
Hello Calimo.
First, thank you for the detailed answer.
Regarding adding the link, I will wait another day or two to see what others are thinking about it. No point in forcing something that others would disapprove.
Lastly, I would like to comment about what you wrote regarding the link itself. R-bloggers, to my view, present a unique source for articles about R. It present something that no other link on the Article page offers (that is also the reason I built it in the first place).
I agree with you that some of the current links on the page deserve to be removed. But others, I personally feel, should go there that currently aren't. For example, the growing website, which is a wonderful endeavor.
With all the best, Talgalili (talk) 19:19, 9 January 2010 (UTC)

O.k people, I am going to add the link. Thank you for your opinion. Talgalili (talk) 22:22, 10 January 2010 (UTC)

Displaying R language in Wikipedia[edit]

I've tried to add R code on a talk page, using Wikipedia's <source lang="R">...</source> but I get an error saying that language doesn't exist. Does anyone know to get it added? The language "S" doesn't exist either.

Quoting R code in Wiki pages would be useful, e.g. the code used to produce plots of statistical distributions like Binomial distribution. Tayste (edits) 21:38, 9 February 2010 (UTC)

The good news is that this is incorporated in the latest stable version of GeSHi (the syntax highlighter), v, and it seems to work okay. (For an example, go here within the next week and click on the "Highlight" button.) The bad news is that Wikipedia is still using Here is the bug report for the last upgrade, and a new request asking for it to be upgraded again. It couldn't hurt to go vote for it. -- Avenue (talk) 02:19, 12 February 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for the heads up - I just went and voted... —Preceding unsigned comment added by Talgalili (talkcontribs) 05:03, 12 February 2010 (UTC)

Number of R packages available[edit]

How many R packages are available for free from CRAN? Anwar (talk) 12:30, 12 April 2010 (UTC)

Currently, the CRAN package repository features 2322 available packages.
Talgalili (talk) 14:41, 12 April 2010 (UTC)

As of Nov 2010 its between 2300 and 2450 depending on your OS. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:00, 22 November 2010 (UTC)

Creating a new section (under GUI section) - "building R gui modules"[edit]

Hi all, I found there are multiple ways for building R GUI modules, such as:

  • traitr - An interface for creating GUIs modeled in part after the traits UI module for python.
  • deducer plugins
  • gWidgets - gWidgets provides a toolkit-independent API for building interactive GUIs.

And I imagine there are more.

Do you think it is worth giving them a short survey in the article?

(I wasn't sure, that's why I am asking)

Best, Talgalili (talk) 05:24, 29 April 2010 (UTC)

Software that embeds/uses R[edit]

The Feature section mentions two other software packages that use R (TIBCO Spotfire and Weka). I would suggest to remove these two and make a general comment: "The R language can also be embedded into other software packages". There are quite a lot of projects that embed R, mentioning TIBCO and Weka seems a bit out of place. SiggyF (talk) 22:26, 16 June 2010 (UTC)

Hi Siggy,
I am still on the fence on the subject. What other projects can you mention ? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Talgalili (talkcontribs) 06:54, 18 June 2010 (UTC)

external links[edit]

I think the external links be winnowed. Some things are obvious keeps like the extensive other wiki links. However other things are not really necessary. If you want the link, the relevant policy is WP:EL.

In addition to the wikibook, wikiversity and commons category, I'd suggest keeping

Remember, links are not included because they are useful but because they are subject to copyright and would otherwise be included on Wikipedia (plus the R main page). So news and searches aren't really relevant. 018 (talk) 16:21, 20 September 2010 (UTC)

Hello 018, thank you for the cleanup job.
Being the creator of the link, I am not going to reinsert it to the links myself, due to my conflict of interest (also see the dialog I had on this topic [3] at the beginning of this year.
However, please note that a similar argument to the inclusion of the link to "R journal" could be applied to R-bloggers, the only difference is that R-bloggers is not pear reviewed. It does, however, aggregate content (only about R!) from over 115 bloggers with mostly high quality (bloggers who write about R are mostly doctoral students, and also includes many professors who are in the field).
I leave this to the decision of you and the other editors.
Talgalili (talk) 04:41, 24 September 2010 (UTC)
I tend to agree with Talgalili that his R-Bloggers aggregator is worth including in the External Links section, as is a link to the R Journal. Both
contain neutral and accurate material that is relevant to an encyclopedic understanding of the subject and cannot be integrated into the Wikipedia article due to copyright issues, amount of detail (such as professional athlete statistics, movie or television credits, interview transcripts, or online textbooks), or other reasons.
as discussed in WP:EL, section 3.1, point 3. While both may be found by browsing through, the first stop for information by most people will be Wikipedia. I think it would be a mistake for us to strip this access to significant knowledge from the article. As for possible violations of the WP:EL guideline section 4, item 11, the R-Bloggers aggregator is not technically a blog, and some of the blogs aggregated there are by recognized authorities, either in their field or in the use of R.
Disclosure: I follow the R-Bloggers aggregator, a few my own blog posts are aggregated there, and I read (but do not edit or contribute to) the R Journal. Tom Hopper (talk) 11:38, 24 September 2010 (UTC)
If linking to a blog is explicitly stated, I don't see how linking to an aggregator is any better. I do agree that a link to the blog is technically allowed for people with Wikipedia pages, but I'm not sure even that is a good idea since I think it would over emphasize that one blog when there are so many.
As for The R journal, I'd be okay adding that back. My main concern was that I thought you weren't supposed to link to a domain twice, but I don't see that rule in EL, so maybe I'm nuts. 018 (talk) 13:48, 24 September 2010 (UTC)
Hello 018, you wrote "I think it (linking to R-bloggers) would over emphasize that one blog when there are so many."
That might be the case. But at the same time, R-bloggers is the only place on-line where you have the list of all the R-bloggers. Before I started it, no one even knew there where so many bloggers (at the time, I had only known of about 8 R bloggers). If you wish, you could link only to that list. Talgalili (talk) 14:43, 30 September 2010 (UTC)
Talgalili, I think it is great that you did this, and I think it is a great thing to have on the web. However, linking to the aggregator is not within the scope of Wikipedia. I removed rseek for the same reason--it is/was a great site and has been very useful to me, but it does not follow the rule of something that I would include if it weren't protected by copyright. 018 (talk) 15:19, 30 September 2010 (UTC)
That's fair. Cheers, Talgalili (talk) 21:27, 1 October 2010 (UTC)

internal vs external links[edit]

I recently remove many external links and replaced many external links with internal links. this was undone in this edit. The edit summary linked to WP:WTAF.

I don't understand this for many reasons. First, the nutshell says, "Editors are encouraged to write the article on a given subject BEFORE adding a link to the article to list pages, disambiguation pages, or templates." but this isn't a list page, a DAB or a template. Second, it makes no references of replacing red internal links with external links.

Most importantly, external links on Wikipedia should generally be in a section at the end, and many of the concepts linked to really should be external links.

Finally, as a general rule, if you don't like part of many edits, you should go through and fix that part. 018 (talk) 18:08, 2 October 2010 (UTC)

The issue at hand was the large number of redlinks created by the edits that were reverted. Internal links have no use if the articles they purportedly link to do not exist. Hence the reversion to a version which left functioning links, albeit external. --Alan the Roving Ambassador (talk) 21:23, 2 October 2010 (UTC)
The Wikipedia policy that is relevant is WP:EL. I can't find the spot where it says that external links are better than no or red links. Maybe you can point me to it. What I do see is that a link to the official website is allowed and that links that are to material that would be included if the article were of featured article status, would be allowed. Essentially, by saying that you think the external links should eventually go away, you are saying that they should never be there. 018 (talk) 21:54, 2 October 2010 (UTC)
Please don't put words in my mouth. What I am saying is that if external links are to be replaced with wikilinks, the articles being wikilinked to need to exist first. Hence my application of WP:WTAF. --Alan the Roving Ambassador (talk) 22:00, 2 October 2010 (UTC)
You are saying that the version you prefer is better than the version I prefer. There are three options. (1) largely remove external links from the body, replacing some with red links, (2) largely remove external links from the body, unlinking those that would become red, (3) keep external links in the body. Since the external links are not inline with the policy WP:EL, 1 or 2 are the viable options. WTAF is an essay, what is more, even it claim to no apply in its nutshell text (see my first comment). 018 (talk) 23:06, 2 October 2010 (UTC)
Again, you are putting words in my mouth. My statement, verbatim, is that if external links are to be replaced with wikilinks, the aticles being wikilinked to need to exist first. As further reversion to avoid loss of information would potentially place me in violation of WP:3RR, I'm going to step back and ask for an outside opinion. --Alan the Roving Ambassador (talk) 00:06, 3 October 2010 (UTC)
Searchtool-80%.png Response to third opinion request:
I have reviewed the edit in question, and the discussion above. As O18 pointed out, WP:WTAF is an essay, not a guideline or policy; it holds no official weight, being merely one editor's opinion. Even if it were a guideline or policy, it would not apply in this circumstance, as it refers to "lists, to templates or to disambiguation pages", and this article is none of those. Therefore, WP:WTAF offers no support whatsoever for Alan's theory that "if external links are to be replaced with wikilinks, the articles being wikilinked need to exist first." In fact, that theory is contrary to WP:REDLINK, which is a guideline. O18 also correctly reads WP:EL, which prohibits external links of the type that they removed and replaced with wikilinks. That said, I have to say that some of those external links could likely be turned into references using Template:cite web, which might be a good compromise. If that's not acceptable to all involved, then the alternative, constrained by WP:EL and WP:REDLINK, is to remove the external links and optionally replace them with red wikilinks.—⌘macwhiz (talk) 02:56, 3 October 2010 (UTC)
If something clearly would be a quality reference, I'm all for adding it, and I think a few of these might fall into that catagory.
Just to lay out my agenda, someone nominated this page for GA status. I'm trying to help that along by getting rid of the really obvious policy violations that I couldn't argue IAR against with a straight face. Right now, a huge problem with the article is that there is one secondary source (the NYT article), one blog post and everything else is basically press releases. I don't see how adding a bunch of link to corporate/project pages is going to help that. 018 (talk) 03:56, 3 October 2010 (UTC)
I stand corrected on my interpretation of the policies and guidelines in question.
I'd be all for seeing some of the redlinked references converted to Template:cite web instances. It would maintain the original (and, subjectively, useful) content, and would also avoid potential issues with new-article creation where another editor may question the relevance of said article and nominate it for deletion under CSD:A7 (although such nominations are often rejected under WP:NOTCSD). --Alan the Roving Ambassador (talk) 23:23, 3 October 2010 (UTC)

Statistical Features[edit]

I think the description of R needs to be at least as sophisticated as those of other programming languages.

I absolutely agree and support your suggestion for addition to the article. Talgalili (talk) 07:54, 23 November 2010 (UTC)

  • R is designed to be a true computer language? What on earth is a true computer language? If we describe what we mean by true computer language with R in mind, then I think we'll be more successful in elaborating the featues of R.
  • it allows users to add additional functionality by defining new functions - This phrase doesn't mean much and could actually be misleading. We should probably say that users can add functions to R (which is hardly a highlight). In its current form, this seems to somehow mean that being easily extensible is a feature of R, which I would think is hardly the case (at least not case enough to be highlighted in the introduction to R). We should probably just say that R is easily extensible through functions and extensions, and the R community is noted for its active contributions in terms of package. But this point is anyway iterated in the second paragraph.
  • Many of R's standard functions are written in the language (in what language?) should be Many of R's standard functions are written in R itself.

Programming Features[edit]

  • When I look at this section, I want to be able to know at once the aspects of R as a programming language. What are the paradigms that R supports? Procudural? Object-Oriented? Functional? And how well does it support those paradigms? How does it do the memory management? Is it interpreted or compiled? A reader shouldn't have to scout through the loose collection of inexpressive text to find out such information, particularly if the heading says Programming Features.
  • As a programming language, R is a command line interpreter similar to BASIC or Python. R is a command line interpreter?! Should be the standard implementation of R (provided by R Development Core Team) comes with a command line interpreter (but other guis exist etc).
  • The above example is deceptively simple because, like APL, R implements matrices, so R can from the command line add or even invert matrices without explicit loops. errr... where is the matrix? and do we really have to say all that to explain how R is great at adding 2+2?
  • A generic function acts differently depending on the type of arguments it is passed. In other words the generic function recognizes the type of object and selects (dispatches) the function (method) specific to that type of object. For example, R has a generic print() function that can print almost every type of object in R with a simple "print(objectname)" syntax. why are we describing generic function in so much detail even after the necessary and given wikipedia link? We should simply say that because R has generic functions, print(objectname) can do blah blah blah.
  • Extending R is also eased by its permissive lexical scoping rules. Now this is what should have been described in more detail rather than generic functions. I am not competent to do that though. -- unsigned comment by User:Obelanna 2010-11-09T07:06:04



Most people who read this page are not going to care in the least that R can be run inside gretl, for one example. The ever-growing list of GUIs should be moved to the R wiki.--Statr (talk) 20:55, 30 November 2010 (UTC)

Hello Statr,
I respectfully disagree with your opinion. Since the subject matter is a language for doing statistics, and since the dominant softwares available are GUI based (e.g: sas, SPSS, JMP, excel and so on), I believe there is much of a point to include the GUI perspective of R (especially for the day they will be able to offer a good competition for the commercial products). As to how this section should be organized, that's a good question for discussion - but should it exist - I think the answer is yes.
p.s: I think even fewer people interested in R GUI will visit the R wiki....
Cheers, Talgalili (talk) 21:55, 2 December 2010 (UTC)
Just try Googling for some of the GUIs. For example, 'nexusBPM' has only 1300 hits, which is not significantly different from 0. In other words, nobody cares (other than the developer). Maybe a few of the GUIs are relevant, but most of the ones listed are not. Remember the target audience--Wikipedia is a general-purpose encyclopedia, not a reference book for R hackers.--Statr (talk) 15:02, 6 December 2010 (UTC)
I Statr, I agree with you on that we shouldn't care so much about keeping a link to every R GUI out there. But the major ones should be mentioned (Rcmdr, Deducer), they ARE big. The "smaller" ones should also be kept (like red-r), since they are "of interest". Connections to known softwares (like RExcel), I believe are also important. But you are right that there should be a limit. The GUI you mentioned is border-line for me (I never heard of it, and don't know how relevant it is). Do you have a criteria to suggest for who to remove? (number of google hits is o.k., but I'm not sure where to draw the line). Best, Talgalili (talk) 17:29, 6 December 2010 (UTC)

GUI vs IDE list?[edit]

Hi all,

I'm going through the two lists of IDEs and GUIs and they seemed to be rather mixed one into the other (especially I see GUI items that are only IDEs).

I wonder if these two sections should be merged, and/or maybe have a standard format for both.

What do you think about it??

Talgalili (talk) 13:15, 3 March 2011 (UTC)

Agree they need merging. Suggest either a paragraph format (not a list), or perhaps linking to a new page, perhaps something like Comparison_of_statistical_packages Statr (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 15:08, 28 March 2011 (UTC).

"Commercial support for R" section??[edit]

A user CeciliaPang has added the following section:

In 2007, Revolution Analytics was founded to provide commercial support for a version of R that it developed for clusters of workstations called ParallelR. In 2011, the ability for reading and writing data in the SAS File Format was first added in Revolution's Enterprise R.[1]

And while I personally think that REvolution existence is a great thing for the R community, It seems to me that this section is a bit biased. A better example of how such a section might be done is this:

I'd be glad to know what other editors think about this.

Talgalili (talk) 12:56, 25 March 2011 (UTC)

I support mentioning Revolution R in some capacity. Statr (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 13:35, 25 March 2011 (UTC).
I agree Statr. But do you think we should re include the paragraph I removed, or put it in in another way? Talgalili (talk) 19:50, 25 March 2011 (UTC)
Could be mentioned in the "Milestones". Or at the end of the first section, before the table of contents.
I'm not sure what the intent of this section is. To put it another way, I'm not sure why it's important that some companies use, integrate or support R. I can see the importance of this earlier on when companies based solely on R were unique, but now that more R-based companies are emerging it makes this information less noteworthy. I can probably be convinced of the utility in noting popular statistical packages (e.g., SAS, SPSS) that integrate with or can call R, but Revolution Analytics doesn't really fit that bill. Rprog (talk) 15:23, 3 October 2012 (UTC)

Is this a typo?[edit]

The first of the external links reads

"Official website, open source implementation of S"

When I click on it, I'm taken to a site about R. Is the "S" a typo? If not, is there an explanation somewhere in here?

It's correct, but misleading. Yes R is an implementation of the S language. Tayste (edits) 02:24, 1 June 2011 (UTC)

Programming features[edit]

This entire section seems a bit misleading.

It starts: "As a programming language, R is a command line interpreter". I would say it has rather than is a CLI.

It's compared to Python and BASIC so as an example from the Python page: "Python is an interpreted, general-purpose high-level programming language"

You could say: "R is an interpreted, high-level programming language that offers a command line interpreter" instead for a minor edit. R is already listed on the Interpreted language page so I think it's justified at least partially by that for consistency. However, I think this section could probably benefit from a deeper rework. The fact that R offers a CLI is probably not that important and it's discussion doesn't offer much information over the general CLI article.

Sanjuronyc (talk) 11:33, 1 June 2011 (UTC)

R as a programming language[edit]

From my experience, R is primarily a scripting language. It lacks properly developed features to develop a large codebase; most importantly proper error messages (WITH LINE NUMBERS!) and stack traces (this function called that function and this line caused exception). I think that this should be explicitly mentioned. I know that most of people who are developing this page are very excited about R, but let's try to fairly assess this: it is impossible to write any medium-to-large (>~10k lines) modular, re-usable and maintainable R codebase.

Dimacq (talk) 19:51, 15 November 2011 (UTC)

Hmmm, perhaps the short paragraph here - Scripting language#General-purpose dynamic languages - is relevant.
Large codebases have been developed with R; Bioconductor is one example. I'm not aware of a facility for attaching line numbers to error messages, but R does have a suite of debugging facilities (see e.g. this overview). They generally support a more interactive approach. The traceback() function produces the call stack for the last error. --Avenue (talk) 04:50, 17 November 2011 (UTC)
👍 Like Tal Galili (talk) 17:46, 19 November 2011 (UTC)

You got me there. Traceback() is the command I didn't know about. Thanks!!

Some recommendations[edit]

Some recommendation based on lecture slides from Ross Ihaka (note that these slides may change in the future):

The article uses `<-` as the assignment operator.

"The `=` assignment form is preferred to the `<-` one." (Slide 15

<<< Actually, this is totally inconsistent with what other sources claim! See, for example, Google R coding standards: (talk) 21:03, 18 November 2011 (UTC) >>>

The article claims:

> mean(y) # Calculate average (arithmetic mean) of (vector) y; result is scalar

Stating "result is scalar" is misleading because R does not have scalars, only vectors of length 1.

"Every value in R must be stored in a vector... This is true for values which look like scalars such as TRUE, 27.3 and "hello"." (Slide 3

Less important: it is also considered good practice to have spaces between most operators (exceptions being / and ^).

Hence: 2 + 2 (instead of 2+2), c(1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6) (instead of c(1,2,3,4,5,6)), etc.

Runedot (talk) 09:23, 17 November 2011 (UTC)

On the first point, the "Writing R Extensions" manual (version 2.13.2 (2011-09-30)) gives different advice: "[...] we recommend the consistent use of the preferred assignment operator ‘<-’ (rather than ‘=’) for assignment."[4] --Avenue (talk) 11:57, 17 November 2011 (UTC)
True, purists prefer "<-", and using "=" can get you into trouble. However - the assignment operator "=" was added to comply with the preferences of ordinary users. When it does make a difference, if one uses "<-" or "=", we are already entering fairly "advanced" territory - at least advanced enough that those who venture there know the difference. All the best Þórður Breiðfjörð (talk) 17:48, 11 July 2013 (UTC)
I think the article as written helps explain to new users why pretty much all of the tutorials use <- instead of =. When I first looked at R code, it confused me. Andrew327 18:28, 11 July 2013 (UTC)

Linking to an R web interface website - and adding a web interface section[edit]

I am copying the comment I got from Slowtortoise4 after removing his link, and would be happy to hear others opinions on the subject.

Slowtortoise4 wrote: You edited the R (programming_language) page and removed a link to a web interface that I added because it was a "not-notable-enough website". To help me understand the rationale, could you tell me why you did not apply the same principle to the other items on the same list, specifically, the link to R AnalyticFlow, Red-R, RKWard and RStudio? In case it was due to language that was not neutral, I've added the link again using the same neutral language as described the other items on the same list. It seems that all these options are equally valid and potentially useful to the public - and should have the same principle applied to all items. Thanks. Slowtortoise4 (talk) 23:48, 6 December 2011 (UTC)

I (Tal Galili) wrote:
Hello dear Slowtortoise4,
First - please know that my editing is NOT intended to offend you in any way. I did it as best as I understood the article. However, I removed your link again - and would like for us to discuss this matter here before we add the link again :)
Second - this entire section about R and IDE/GUI is massed up. RStudio, for example, is both a GUI (see, for example, this project) and an IDE. In both cases it should be mentioned since they are clearly (in my view) very notable (for example, they were one of the sponsors at the last useR2011 in England). With regards to RedR and R AnalyticFlow, there was a debate awhile ago if to keep them or not, and I voted in favor of them. My reasoning was (and still is) that they each show a very unique attempt at creating an R GUI, and should be mentioned because of it (even that both do not seem to be widely used).
Now let us get to your link -
What you write about is (to my humble understanding) NOT a GUI nor is it an IDE. It is simply a new (let us call it) interface to R, through the web. I imagine it is based on something like RApache or something similar which I may not know about.
But in any event it is not a new editor for R, nor is it a new GUI environment for it.
If you are interested in including the link (which I imagine you do, since I imagine it is your website), then a section should be added about (for example) web interfaces of R (were the most polite thing would probably be that you would write it, paste it here - and other editors of the page could give an opinion). Such a section should (in my opinion) include mentions of RApache, R-Node, and MAYBE some of their use cases (like your website). However, it could end up that this section would stay without the use cases, since there are probably many, and mentioning one over the other may not be "balanced". In which case, you can write a new wiki page called "R webinterfaces use cases" - and if it gets to be notable enough to stay on wiki - we can link to it from here.
I'd be happy to know what you think, and also what other editors here think. Tal Galili (talk) 06:29, 7 December 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for creating this discussion. I'm confused by the reasons that led you to conclude that the proposed website is "NOT a GUI nor is it an IDE ... not a new editor for R, nor is it a new GUI environment for it". The proposed website, is a tool to write R scripts and view both text and graphical output. It allows full use of R including packages. It works within a web browser without software download or installation. Why would it not be an "editor" if a person may write and edit R scripts? Why is it not a GUI if a person may run scripts and view output without manually running the R software at the command line? It does not use R Apache, although the developer of that project appears to have stopped work on that project (I followed Tal Galili's link above). It does not use R-Node. But, it is different in that R-Node must be downloaded and installed, whereas the proposed website tool can be used as is inside a web browser. It is useful students who are less inclined to learn how to install and configure open source software. It is also useful for people who do not have their own computers or servers to download and install software. Both Red-R and R AnalyticFlow, currently on the page, require software download.
In response to Tal Galili question, the proposed website uses Javascript JSON and a wiki front end, which provides access to wiki features such as version control, which is useful for learning how to write R scripts.
I do not mind if the discussion results in excluding the proposed website tool. I am writing to ask for a fair application of the principles to include or exclude tools. If it is to the benefit of the R community and the public at large to have a variety of alternative front ends to use the R software package, then, it seems like all such tools should be included. If the tools must have an academic reference or other objective indicators of "notability", then, all tools that do not meet that requirement should be excluded. In that case, the website tool I'm proposing should be excluded. But, other tools on the current page should also be excluded because they also do not have an objective indicator of "notability". Thanks. Slowtortoise4 (talk) 09:23, 7 December 2011 (UTC)
Dear Slowtortoise4.
To my understanding - your web implementation of R is not a new IDE or GUI. It is just a cloud implementation of R with a (very minimal!) front end (which is not "new"). If anything, I would link to projects like RWeb - that also provide the source code for building websites such as the one you implemented. And again, a more "GUI" website built on R is a website like this: Which I do not think fits to an IDE or a GUI section (it would, MAYBE, fit to a more general "R in on the web" sort of section).
So my position stands as is, and I await the opinions of other editors.
Tal Galili (talk) 11:04, 7 December 2011 (UTC)
p.s: another example of a web user interface (WUI) of R or
I am not sure if we should add a section like this to the article - because since everyone can open such a site - it can easily be that every university who has such a site will put their link here. I am not sure what is the added value in such a case, and what criterion to use. I am eager to read the opinions of other editors. Tal Galili (talk) 11:21, 7 December 2011 (UTC)
Hi Talgalili. To help me understand your rationale above, could you apply the same rationale to the existing items on the page? Would it be fair to say that Red-R and R AnalyticFlow is worthy because you deem it more difficult to write traditional application software and that you consider "cloud implementation" of software to be trivial and not worthy of mention? Does source code have to be available in order for a tool to be worthy? Is "minimal" a bad thing? What if minimal was on purpose to attract new users to the R community? Could you tell me how those Red-R and R AnalyticFlow meet the "notability" requirement? It would help me when editing pages in the future.
Slightly separate, I'd suggest that cloud implementations are not automatically less worthy or trivial. Having access to software without depending on hardware ownership is valuable for many parts of the world. Not every university will provide their own cloud apps because of the security requirements and the costs of the server infrastructure. Besides, if that does come to pass, then, it would be easy enough to change the page at that time. But, it does not seem to be useful to keep some tools and exclude some tools simply on assumptions about whether a tool is difficult to build or not. Thanks. Slowtortoise4 (talk) 17:50, 7 December 2011 (UTC)
Hi Slowtortoise4.
You are asking wonderful questions, but I am not sure that having me go through and answering them will take us very far.
How about we try and see what we can agree upon:
Can you agree with me that what you added was a link to a GUI section - where it does not belong? (for example, on the octave page, where you also are having a similar argument, you didn't put it in GUI)
If we agree - that means we need to add a WUI/cloud-application section to the article. If this is what you propose, I think it is a good idea. Please write it and post it here for other to review. If it is "good" and balanced, people will approve. I am not sure your link will survive in the long run - but try and we will see where it leads.
 :) Tal Galili (talk) 19:17, 7 December 2011 (UTC)
I would go further and admit that the website I proposed to add does NOT have an objective indicator of notability according to the Wikipedia guidelines. I'm happy for it to be removed from the GNU Octave page, too. But, would you agree that some of the existing tools also do not have an objective indicator of notability and therefore also be removed? I edited the page to add the proposed website because I saw that it was acceptable to have tools such as Red-R and R AnalyticFlow. My objective is not to make a case to add the proposed website. My objective is to fairly apply the same principle to the mention of all tools. Once I was made aware of the Wikipedia guidelines about notability, I thought it was fair to require an academic paper or other objective indicators. What makes it confusing is that the principle seems to be applied in a somewhat arbitrary manner (or at least not transparent to a new user like me). Your views about how Red-R and R AnalyticFlow meets the Wikipedia notability requirements would take us far because it would act as evidence for future users of how the notability principle should be applied. Thanks. Slowtortoise4 (talk) 20:07, 7 December 2011 (UTC)
Hi Slowtortoise4,
The issue of Red-R and R AnalyticFlow has been discussed here before as others wanted to remove it. I felt like protecting it because I found these projects as very interesting (as in "unusual") at least to me, and that made me feel good with letting them stay (I do not have any other reason, I don't get paid or even know the people behind them). I agree with you that at the end of the day, many grey areas are encountered when entering the "what link to keep" land. I think that you won't find a definite answer to what you seek (if there was, we had a bot to do the job, now wouldn't we?!). But please, I said before that I would be for having a WUI section in R - I would rather develop this idea, then the general "why should one stay and not another".  :) Tal Galili (talk) 20:15, 7 December 2011 (UTC)
I am not interested in promoting a specific website. I believe in transparency and principles. Your most recent reply confirms that personal interests outweigh the Wikipedia notability guidelines. Editors at reference publishing companies are named and accountable for their judgment, indeed, their jobs depend on having their names known. Wikipedia depends on anonymous editors. Guidelines, such as for notability, seems critical to supplement the credibility of Wikipedia. My original proposal was made because I thought that if Red-R and R AnalyticFlow met the notability requirements, then the proposed website could, too. I would not seek an exception to the notability guidelines - I was only seeking fair treatment and transparent application of the notability guidelines. But, it is sad to learn from this first hand experience that the Wikipedia notability guidelines are not applied when something is favored by an editor. Worse, it significantly reduced confidence in the Wikipedia project.
I appreciate the opportunity to express my views, but, I do not enjoy conflict situations. This appears to be one person's preference compared to another person's preference. I respectfully withdraw my proposal to add the link to the page. Thanks. Slowtortoise4 (talk) 23:50, 7 December 2011 (UTC)

Tal asked for comments from other editors, so I'll add some comments. I agree completely with Tal that the suggested link was not a GUI (in fact, it rather looks like a terminal window), nor an IDE. I also would have removed the link had Tal not done so. Slowtortoise has an excellent question about what "notable" means. I have removed numerous other references from the IDE/GUI sections as not sufficiently "notable". I have thought about removing more, but I don't know where to draw the line between notable and innovative (but not notable). One crude test is to use a Google search and see how many links are found. has 30,000 links and has only 100 links. It would be extremely hard to justify 100 links as "notable". As a point of reference: a Google search for the zenburn color theme has 10000s of links, but the wikipedia page for it was deleted as "not notable". Finally, I think Tal has been very fair and unbiased in this discussion. Statr —Preceding undated comment added 15:38, 9 December 2011 (UTC).

👍 Like Thanks Statr Tal Galili (talk) 17:04, 10 December 2011 (UTC)

I have added a new "useR! conference" section - please let me know what you think[edit]


The section is built upon a combination of these two sources:

Please let me know your thoughts on this matter. Tal Galili (talk) 20:36, 12 December 2011 (UTC)

Notable bugs section[edit]

I've added "Notable bugs" section. I strongly believe that this IS VERY important for people to know, and this should not be deleted! I repeat: this is a bug in OFFICIAL STABLE release of R, and an excuse "oh well please submit bug report to R developers" is just inadequate. Without UNBIASED assessment, R page of Wikipedia is just a flashy ad. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:08, 10 January 2012 (UTC)

Every piece of software I know has many known bugs at any time (and there are doubtless at least as many unknown ones). This is true both of commercial and of open-source code -- I contribute to open-source projects and I've also been a product manager in software companies, so I've seen both bug backlogs. Unfortunate, but true. If there is a reliable source that indicates that R has a particularly large number of important bugs, then that might be worth mentioning. Mentioning individual bugs is not encyclopedic.
What's more, the particular bug you added isn't even in the core R system, but in a user-contributed add-on package (Matrix) -- though you didn't give that information in your edit. Many systems distribute user-contributed software along with the official release, and explicitly disclaim any responsibility for it.
Please do not add back your bug section before consensus is reached here on the Talk page. --Macrakis (talk) 20:02, 10 January 2012 (UTC)
As a user of R, I can assure you that R has a lot of bugs, much more than in commercial products, for example Matlab/SAS/SPSS. I think that this article is very biased and provides a false feeling that R is "stable" (see history section). Writing R code requires a painstaking work of tweaking the code for all various cornercases and avoiding such a stupid bugs as I've mentioned (-Diagonal(n)). Bulk of R is user-contributed, therefore it is part of R. Commercial products (Ansys, Matlab, AutoCad, Adobe, SolidWorks etc.) almost never distribute user-contributed software (yes, Mathworks have webpage of user-contributed codebase, but it is not included in any official code). I hope that I have clarified why I think that it is noteworthy to put here. (unsigned comment by User: at 2012-01-10T15:17:58‎ EST)
If you can find solid reliable sources supporting the claim that R has more bugs than commercial products, that information may be worth adding to the WP page. If this is simply your personal experience, that is what Wikipedia calls original research, and should not be added to articles.
As for "the bulk of R is user-contributed, therefore it is part of R" -- that is a non sequitur. There is a core part of R developed and supported by the R-core group (which also includes user contributions), and there are other parts. The distinction is very clear. There is a long tradition of user-contributed software (cf. SHARE and DECUS for some early ones) and no one confuses that with the core system. The current article talks quite clearly about contributed packages.
This is not to say that R is a perfect system. There are many infelicities of both design and implementation in it. See for example, Patrick Burns' R Inferno for many examples. And I do believe serious critiques of the design and implementation of R would be useful. I'm thinking of things along the lines of Kernighan's "Why Pascal is not my favorite programming language" [5] or for that matter Wikipedia's Criticism of Java. A "Critiques" section would make perfect sense -- but it must be based on Reliable Sources, not our personal tastes. --Macrakis (talk) 20:31, 10 January 2012 (UTC)
I concur with Macrakis. I've used SAS (including IML) since about 1984, MatLab since about 2000, and R since about 2003. I've taught graduate courses using both SAS and R. For the last three years I've chosen to use only R, both in research and teaching. It's that good. I understand that you might have some frustrations getting started, but WP is not the place to resolve those frustrations. Instead, you might try to find the answer to your questions here: (talk) 02:51, 11 January 2012 (UTC)
👍 Like Tal Galili (talk) 10:38, 11 January 2012 (UTC)

Interfaces section needs an overall[edit]

Is there anyone here feeling like helping make some decisions on it?

It is filled with a mixture of IDE and GUI, some are not maintained or interesting, and some are central (like JGR or RStudio).

Tal Galili (talk) 11:18, 15 March 2012 (UTC)

Which ones would you like to get rid of? GaramondLethe 18:38, 26 August 2012 (UTC)

The commercial support section could use a little work[edit]

I added a sentence about "Oracle R Enterprise" to this section. The references I put in are simply to the Oracle website, so I recognize that they might not be the best citations. I also noticed that the Revolution material includes citations of press releases and blog entries (but I didn't change any of this). I'm a novice wikipedia editor. What are other people's ideas on the best sources to cite for this Oracle and Revolution material? If others have suggestions, I'm happy to try to help.Karl (talk) 23:41, 8 November 2012 (UTC)

Actually, none of the material sourced to the Oracle website belong in this article, they're essentially press releases, and Wikipedia isn't for free publicity. If you want to include it, do a news search and find a newspaper or magazine (Wired or some such) that mentions it. -Fjozk (talk) 01:09, 9 November 2012 (UTC)
Great idea, thanks. I found independent sources for the 2 Oracle citations that I had put in, plus I replaced the other Oracle citations in this section with independent sources (e.g., ComputerWorld, InformationWeek, PC World), so now they all meet wikipedia sourcing guidelines. I tried to do the same thing with the 4 Revolution R citations that are straight to the Revolution website (reference numbers 40-43). However, I was not able to find any independent sources for this material. What do you think? I'm a novice wikipedia editor, so I am reluctant to remove references that other people put in, or to remove any parts of the sentence describing Revolution R.Karl (talk) 03:41, 9 November 2012 (UTC)
I thought you got one source for Revolution R? Blogs are not reliable references, so you are free to remove them and replace them, or simply remove them and either add an unsourced tage or leave it unsourced; use an edit summary saying you removed a blog or something. There is also a series of drop down templates in the edit window, if you click on "Cite," and the sources will be properly composed for Wikipedia. Your sources look fine, and this is generally the way to cite material. -Fjozk (talk) 04:08, 9 November 2012 (UTC)
Removed citations to Revolution Analytics press releases and blogs. The sentence is fine without citations, because it is a simple list of product components - No controversial claim is being made.Karl (talk) 15:05, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

Added Zementis to list of commercial companies supporting R, and added supporting citation (refereed journal).Karl (talk) 16:28, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

Undid a deletion, requesting other people's views of this. OK now?[edit]

I undid the deletion of material I added on Nov 3. This was an edit made in good faith. However, I'm a novice wikipedia editor, and I see MrOllie's POV about the appearance of COI. I removed the portion of the added material that might be viewed as a COI - the rest should be fine. I also reduced the number of citations to 3, and modified one of them to point to a more independent source (Java Developers Journal). Full disclosure: I am an author on one of the cited papers, but I have no connection to the other 2. While making this update, I also added some wiki-links to other terms used in these sentences. Do other people think that this material is fine now?Karl (talk) 16:07, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

Please give me some guidance -- I just feel bullied.
I'm a novice wikipedia author, but this is discouraging and just seems wrong. I made a thoughtful edit, in good faith, trying to address the other wikipedian's point, and left a detailed comment on the talk page describing my edit and reasoning. However, the other person just removed my material with no comment on this TALK page. The person's edit summary was "rv COI rexeranalytics stuff".
I tried to address the COI in my discussion on this TALK page. I'd like to point out that the person removed my whole sentence, and all 3 references, not just the one reference that I am an author on.
This same person is removing other material I've been adding to other pages, with no discussion on the TALK pages, even when the material I've added has nothing to do with me (so no COI). See e.g., SIGKDD, and my request for explanation and coaching on Talk:SIGKDD. I had some time this week, and so I thought I'd try to give back some to the data mining community by helping to improve the wikipedia material on a number of pages……but this is just discouraging. I'm new to wikipedia, can others help suggest what I should do? I'm not sure what the comity conventions are, but I thought people would be open to working with me and would provide constructive feedback if they didn't like my edits. I have a PhD, and have been working in data mining / analytics for 20 years, so those are the areas I'm trying to contribute to (see User:Krexer. But now I just feel bullied and discouraged from contributing to wikipedia again.Karl (talk) 20:17, 9 November 2012 (UTC)
I think the COI reversion was okay, although handled poorly. Because of your COI the deletion should be handled with talk page discussion, and other editors can then insert the material after discussion to remove the COI. Yes, the data mining, cyberinfrastructure pages on Wikipedia are a nightmare, your edits are welcome. Constructive feedback and assistance is the way to go, it does not always happen, though. Please feel free to post the deleted material on this page, and I will look it over. -Fjozk (talk) 20:58, 9 November 2012 (UTC)
Good point, and I like your suggested strategy: Due to my COI (being an author of one of the 3 sources I propose citing), I will post the material here in the talk page, and other people knowledgeable in this topic area can decide whether or not they want to insert some or all of it into the R (programming language) page. Here are the two sentences that I propose adding to the end of the first paragraph:
Polls and surveys of data miners consistently show R to be used by more data miners than any other tool.[2][3] R's popularity has increased substantially in recent years.[4][2]

Only references 2-4 are relevant to this edit, but I did not know how to suppress reference #1 from appearing in this list.

  1. ^ 'Red Hat for stats' goes toe-to-toe with SAS
  2. ^ a b David Smith (2012); R Tops Data Mining Software Poll, Java Developers Journal, May 31, 2012.
  3. ^ Karl Rexer, Heather Allen, & Paul Gearan (2011); 2011 Data Miner Survey Summary, presented at Predictive Analytics World, Oct. 2011.
  4. ^ Robert A. Muenchen (2012); The Popularity of Data Analysis Software.

Reference one appears in this reflist because it is from elsewhere on this page not in your blurb right above. When you use the reflist template it puts in a list of all references on a page. -Fjozk (talk) 06:54, 10 November 2012 (UTC)

Thank you again, Fjozk for suggesting this helpful strategy.
Now, regarding the point about why my edits to other pages are being deleted: It appears that my COI on this page is causing one editor to track all of my edits to other pages (e.g, SIGKDD) and remove my contributions (claiming that every edit I make has COI, without trying to evaluate whether there is really COI -- or sometimes my material is just removed with no explanation). I am a novice wikipedia author, and recognize that a few of my early edits had COI. A couple friendly editors, such as yourself, have pointed out wikipedia guidelines on COI, and talk page conventions. I am now trying to follow these. However, many of my edits have nothing to do with COI (e.g, SIGKDD). I have tried to start a discussion of my proposed edits on Talk:SIGKDD, but have gotten no response. Maybe I just need to wait - there's no hurry. What do you suggest?Karl (talk) 06:44, 10 November 2012 (UTC)
Yes, take a breather. With a single-minded editor like this, who thinks they have latched onto something pernicious, and may be at more for socializing than creating content, but one who is also way over his head knowledge wise, it can be tricky. The SIGKDD article is seriously hideous. Would it be possible to improve the whole article, if I help with the COI editor? It's not the highest priority, though, as the cyberinfrastructure and HPC articles need work more, but, it would be nice. -Fjozk (talk) —Preceding undated comment added 06:48, 10 November 2012 (UTC)
regarding the SIGKDD entry, I could reach out to Gregory, one of the founders of the SIG and the original KDD conferences in the 90s (I periodically correspond with him). He could probably provide some historical info and other material on the SIG, as well as current info. I can then see if a few of us can help insert some of this material into the wikipedia SIGKDD entry. If there are concerns that the material is COI or not properly notable, I could enter it into the talk page first, so others could evaluate it.Karl (talk) 07:25, 10 November 2012 (UTC)
No, we have to use reliable tertiary sources. I document cyberinfrastructures, and, when I get my meeting with the founder or the chairman or the CEO, I know to stop paying attention when they start talking. I know my comments are bad, but I just finished some excellent documentation of a new pipeline, and every one on the team is complimenting me on it; and I did it because I avoided the CEO like the plague. In addition, primary research will lead to issues and more work than just finding secondary or tertiary sources, because we will have to back up every statement he makes with exhaustive literature searches. Better to find and use only reliable references as defined already by Wikipedia. -Fjozk (talk) 07:36, 10 November 2012 (UTC)
Great point about avoiding a chairman or CEO for most things. Thanks.Karl (talk) 14:36, 11 November 2012 (UTC)

I agree that there has been an increase in R's popularity, so added that sentence and added the reference Bradhill14 (talk) 04:52, 16 November 2012 (UTC)

FYI: Fjozk has been banned indefinitely. GaramondLethe 12:47, 16 November 2012 (UTC)

Adding a link to ""[edit]

Hello dear editors,

I would like to ask to add to the links section: The site has been around for over 2 years, it now includes over 10,000 articles on R, based on the writings of over 450 bloggers, with over 12,000 readers (and over 20K visits per day). It is mentioned in many websites across the web, and also in several books on R.

However, since I am its founder, I have a conflict of interest, and would like others to give me feedback on rather or not it is a good fit to the article at this point.

With regards, Tal Galili (talk) 21:39, 22 February 2013 (UTC)

Dear editors, I took the liberty and added the following link:
  • R-bloggers, a daily news site about R, with 10,000+ articles, tutorials and case-studies, contributed by over 450 R bloggers.
Please let me know if you have any reservations. Thanks, Tal Galili (talk) 12:16, 1 March 2013 (UTC)

Mandelbrot example[edit]

This is not the code that is actually used for the gif.

The correct code is here:

External links again[edit]

Pinging User:Talgalili and User:Mortense.

We need to slim down the external links. Wikipedia:External links notes as a guideline that it is "not Wikipedia's purpose to include a lengthy or comprehensive list of external links related to each topic". At the moment we have seven external links, which are, in order:

  1. The official R site;
  2. The R wiki;
  3. A list of R-related books;
  4. An aggregated R news site;
  5. Two galleries of graphs;
  6. An R-related search engine.

This is...far too much, and some of the sites are unnecessary. The official site is, obviously, fine. The R wiki would seem to fail criteria 12 in WP:ELNO. The list of R-related books doesn't seem to serve a particular purpose, while R-generated graphs should be (indeed, have been) incorporated into the article. The aggregated news site would appear to pass under criteria 4 of the "Sites to consider" section of the EL policy. So, my suggestion is that we limit it to:

  1. The official R site;
  2. The aggregated news site;
  3. The ODP entry for R, which contains a lot of the other links.

Thoughts? Ironholds (talk) 18:21, 6 January 2014 (UTC)

Agreed. I don't see six as inherently excessive but it's much better to link to a managed external links site. --Northernhenge (talk) 21:59, 6 January 2014 (UTC)
Hello Ironholds, I'm very happy you are taking this on.
I should first re-iterate that I have a conflict of interest when it comes to r-bloggers. So while I think it should be in the links, I am biased, and need others to give their objective opinion.
As for the other links - I think that the dmoz list of links is relatively out of date, so I do *not* think it is that important to link to (the links and information in this article are much more updated).
I would argue that the r search website (rseek) should be included in the list, because R is a somewhat hard language to search for.
The graph galleries could probably be mentioned inside the article as examples of how R offers a high level of graphics for statistics, I think they are valuable (though they do not have to be in the list of links).
As for the list of books, I think they are easy to find (p.s: rseek vs google)
Best, Tal Galili (talk) 23:27, 6 January 2014 (UTC)
It's not really Wikipedia's job to enable improved google search, however. I'd be interested in including, say, ggplot2 graphs as a way of demonstrating advanced plotting options, but we can always generate those ourselves. What if we partnered link removal with updating the ODP entries to incorporate the links in dispute? Best of both worlds. Ironholds (talk) 23:44, 6 January 2014 (UTC)
Hello Ironholds,
Regarding rseek - it is one of those things that I think are hard for new comers to know about. Do you think it might be worth mentioning in the body of the article? Maybe with just linking to this source:
As for adding ggplot2 plots to the main page, it is a good idea. It might even be worth asking on the ggplot2 forum for help in extending the current two articles (that of R and of ggplot2) -!forum/ggplot2
As for ODP, I do not have permission to edit there, do you?
Tal Galili (talk) 15:42, 8 January 2014 (UTC)
Well, we can submit ODP suggestions :). In regards to rseek, we try to avoid embedding external links in the middle of articles - as a long-time R programmer I've personally never used it, actually (stackoverflow is pretty superior). Ironholds (talk) 20:21, 10 January 2014 (UTC)
Hello Ironholds,
o.k., I will go with your plan of action, and I imagine we will probably open this topic again in the future when more editors will be willing to join the discussion.
With regards, Tal Galili (talk) 16:00, 11 January 2014 (UTC)


I'm interested in the history of this. It appears that there's a lot of good information at Reference 1 (R : Past and Future History). Can someone more knowledgeable in this field try to create a history section for this article?--ɱ (talk) 13:35, 14 August 2014 (UTC)

Julia or PostgreSQL with R[edit]

"R functionality has been made accessible from several scripting languages such as Python,[43] Perl,[44] Ruby,[45] and F#.[46] PL/R can be used alongside, or instead of, the PL/pgSQL scripting language in the PostgreSQL and Greenplum database management system."

Is it time to add Julia to the list (scripting language is however an understatement..)? See my last edit there (in the chapter I made). I've never used R or used R from Julia or other way around (both possible). Since I've not tried I do not know how mature/complete the support is. Maybe it just has no bugs and just works. Please if you can comment on that..

PL/R is I think using the whole R language in PostgreSQ, right? Should the wording be changed to something clearer: "R can be used within PostgreSQL database (using PL/R)"? comp.arch (talk) 16:05, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

Okay. So...get a citation and add it? And sure, that rewording sounds fine. Ironholds (talk) 00:49, 8 December 2014 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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