R

Blogs on the R software.

One Little Thing To Consider When Naming Things (Software)

Everyone knows that naming is hard (the other hard thing is cache invalidation). There is a little thing that I guess people often forget to consider when naming things: is the name easy to type? I have had difficulties with typing a few software package names, and the two most impressive ones are “TeX Live” and “ReporteRs”. For TeX Live, I really wished there were not a space between “TeX”…

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save() vs saveRDS()

So Jenny finally decided to write a blog post about why she would set your computer on fire, which was great. Twitter is an inferior tool for discussions or Q&A. Sadly, most people would still stick to Twitter for everything. I saw Scott Gigante asked Jenny a great question on Twitter: Why do you prefer saveRDS() to save()? From the replies, Simon Coulombe cited Gavin Simpson’s blog post in 2012…

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nrow, references and copies

December 10, 2017
By
nrow, references and copies

    Hi all, This post deals with a strange phenomenon in R that I have noticed while working on unbiased MCMC. Reducing the problem to a simple form, consider the following code, which iteratively samples a vector ‘x’ and stores it in a row of a large matrix called ‘chain’ (I’ve kept the MCMC […]

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How I Learned R

This week a neighbor of mine told me he wanted to learn R, and asked me how I learned R. I realized I had never blogged about it, so here we go. I learned R through a rather unusual way: I mostly learned R by answering other people’s questions. R was introduced to me in 2004 in a course on statistical computing when I was an undergraduate. Before that, we…

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The Spreadsheet Lady

rOpenSci published an interview of Jenny Bryan today, and I enjoyed reading it. It is very much worth reading as a profile of an R developer, because it showed a few aspects and roles of a software developer that are often less known to the general public: a software developer as a (former) teacher, a researcher, a collaborator, and a mother. I found Jenny and I had several things in…

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Why Are Some Good Old Ideas Buried in the History of Statistical Graphics?

The grand master of base R, Karl Broman, recently came up with an ingenious idea of showing missing values in scatterplots. Someone replied on Twitter that he had never seen it before. My PhD adviser Di replied never say never, and pointed out this idea had existed and been implemented for decades (e.g., in GGobi and MANET). It is a pity that these great software packages didn’t get the attention…

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How Twitter Shaped Us

“We become what we behold. We shape our tools and then our tools shape us.” — John Culkin. I came across this quote earlier this year, and I’d rate it as the most important single piece of thought I learned this year.1 This morning (actually last night) Karl Broman said on Twitter, “The tweets are too damn long.” And Christoffer Flensburg replied: Somewhere between 140 and 280 is the point…

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How Twitter Shaped Us

“We become what we behold. We shape our tools and then our tools shape us.” — John Culkin. I came across this quote earlier this year, and I’d rate it as the most important single piece of thought I learned this year.1 This morning (actually last night) Karl Broman said on Twitter, “The tweets are too damn long.” And Christoffer Flensburg replied: Somewhere between 140 and 280 is the point…

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Embed A Live Video of Yourself Through Your Camera in HTML5 Slides

Embed A Live Video of Yourself Through Your Camera in HTML5 Slides

Two years ago, I did a quick search on how to embed a live video through my webcam in my HTML5 presentations, and it turned out to be simple enough if you have a modern web browser. I was looking for this because sometimes when you do webinars, your audience may want to see you (perhaps to confirm that they are not listening to a robot). It is also helpful…

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Reproducible Research With A Marmot

Reproducible Research With A Marmot

Perhaps I have seen it before, but I just came across the “rubber duck debugging” method. It reminded me of a talk I gave at the 2013 BioC conference, in which I introduced the “marmot reproducible researching” method. That is, when you write code chunks in a knitr document, you need to explain to the marmot what you are doing in the code with the corresponding prose/narratives. I don’t remember…

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