Whenever I’m stuck

The first place I go when ever I’m stuck doing something that should be simple is Quick-RRob Kabacoff has done a great job of maintaining this site for the past 5 years.

It’s well structured and gives me enough information that I can use and experiment with.




“Simplicity is about subtracting the obvious and adding the meaningful.”  – John Maeda

R is a simple and elegant language but I’ve always struggled to use it simply and elegantly. Why ? Two main reasons.

  1. The power and flexibility of R can make difficult things easy but also easy things hard, and by hard I mean complex, counter intuitive and difficult
  2. Documentation is dense, thorough and complete but usually unusable. Most documentation reflects the software’s statistical analysis roots and makes minimal reference to data preparation and transformation that usually takes up to 80% of the effort in real life modelling exercises

Together this makes programming in R an exercise in Googling and looking for help on what should be straight forward. The purpose of these posts is to document and share what I’ve learnt in trying to use R in real exercises.