R profiled in NY Times

less than 1 minute read

If you do much statistics and haven’t worked with R, you should try it out. The NY Times profiled the software yesterday:

R is similar to other programming languages, like C, Java and Perl, in that it helps people perform a wide variety of computing tasks by giving them access to various commands. For statisticians, however, R is particularly useful because it contains a number of built-in mechanisms for organizing data, running calculations on the information and creating graphical representations of data sets.
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What makes R so useful and helps explain its quick acceptance is that statisticians, engineers and scientists can improve the softwares code or write variations for specific tasks. Packages written for R add advanced algorithms, colored and textured graphs and mining techniques to dig deeper into databases.

The graphs are pretty, and it’s free software. The article describes it as a “lingua franca” for grad students. Maybe not, but I wouldn’t invest my time learning anything less powerful.