Joseph G. Voelkel
Center for Quality and Applied Statistics, RIT
An Introduction to R
What is R? One view is that it is a language and environment that was
created for statistical computing and graphics. However, unlike most
data-analysis software, it is designed around a true computer language.
This language is object-oriented, so it can accept much richer structures
than most packages with which it competes.
A second view is that R is an integrated suite of software facilities for
data manipulation, calculation and graphical display. It includes:
- an effective data handling and storage facility,
- a suite of operators for calculations on arrays, in particular matrices,
- a large, coherent, integrated collection of intermediate tools for data
analysis,
- graphical facilities for data analysis and display, on-screen or on
hardcopy, and
- a well-developed, simple and effective programming language which
includes conditionals, loops, user-defined recursive functions and input
and output facilities.
Many users think of R as a statistics system. A third view is to think of
it rather as an environment within which statistical techniques are
implemented. In particular, users may (and constantly do) add additional
functionality by defining new functions. For computationally-intensive
tasks, C, C++ and Fortran code can be linked and called at run time.
Advanced users can write C code to manipulate R objects directly. R is
designed to be run interactively. It is available at no cost. (The above
information was liberally borrowed from the www.r-project.org web site.)
The speaker is a user of R, and will demonstrate some of its capabilities
in this talk.
Joseph G. Voelkel is a professor in the Graduate Statistics Program at the
John D. Hromi Center for Quality and Applied Statistics, Kate Gleason
College of Engineering. His areas of expertise and interest include
experimental design, quality control and improvement, reliability, and
statistical modeling, including statistical aspects of data mining.