A little R love for my non-R friends…

Source: http://xkcd.com/1064/ There's even a package to make your figured in XKCD fashion! How awesome is that!??!??! http://stackoverflow.com/questions/12675147/how-can-we-make-xkcd-style-graphs-in-r

Source: http://xkcd.com/1064/
There’s even a package to make your figures in XKCD fashion! How awesome is that!??!??! http://stackoverflow.com/questions/12675147/how-can-we-make-xkcd-style-graphs-in-r

***Update*** Maxwell Joseph 20+ R tutorials to YouTube for a new undergraduate course in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at CU developed by Andrew Martin and Brett Melbourne, which are a nice place to start…***End Update***

The other day, a colleague/friend sent me a message asking how to go about learning R and specifically asked about online resources to help her lessen the learning curve. Since I knew she is a SAS user, I had some specific ideas of where I would point her, but I though I’d also post the guts of my response here…

So you’re interested in converting to R? That’s great and you won’t regret it…. As a former SAS user (and a general “new” R user), I usually suggest the following:

Many people recommend the R in Nutshell book from O’Reilly. It’s good, but it’s mostly a rehashing of available online help files: http://oreilly.com/catalog/9780596801717

Perhaps the best compilation of online video/tutorial type resources for learning R is this collection compiled by Jeromy Anglim: http://jeromyanglim.blogspot.com/2010/05/videos-on-data-analysis-with-r.html

As a former SAS user, I also suggest you start with Muenchen’s book  from Springer: http://www.springer.com/statistics/computational+statistics/book/978-1-4614-0684-6 He has an accompanying website with examples too that’s pretty useful: http://r4stats.com/examples/

It’s not to hard to find preview copies of the above mentioned texts online, but if you find them useful you really should support the authors and purchase a copy. As you progress, you’ll quickly outgrow any single book and then I suggest using the true power of R, the available online community and resources. Here are a few suggestions:

  • The R Project homepage. It really should be bookmarked. This is the place to come for official news from the R Project, plus links to documentation, mailing lists, and the official R FAQs
  • StackOverflow. Have a question about R? Search for questions tagged with “r” and you’ll probably find an answer. If not, post your question and I guarantee you’ll have an answer before you know it….
  • R bloggers. This is the first “news” feed I check every morning. It’s my go to for news, tips and articles related to R and is basically  a blog aggregator for posts from dozens of R bloggers, including the awesome work form the team at Revolution Analytics
  • #rstats on Twitter. This is pretty self explanatory (in 140 characters, no less). Just search for the #rstats hastag
  • If you find yourself still looking and desire some offline reading, the R Project has an extensive list of R books, as does the R Programming Language tag on Amazon.com

Hope this helps!

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