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i tried help my wife who use R in school, only to get quickly lost. also attended ~1 hour R course on university.

to me, R was a waste of time and I really dont understand why its so popular in academia. if you already have some programming knowledge, go with Python + Scipy instead

EDIT: R is even more useless without r studio, http://www.rstudio.com/. and NO, dont go build a website in R!

Maybe you didn't mean it this way, but to me your comment reads as, basically, "I tried R for an hour and didn't immediately grok it, therefore it is a waste of time."

That may not be what you meant, so I haven't downvoted yet, but it doesn't seem to be an attitude that is helpful for the conversation.

Thanks for your explanation. It seems my ability to communicate is getting worse every year :-/.

What I meant to say was that I helped my wife during her master thesis (~6 months) with R, in addition to spending an hour in one of the classes.

Her teachers also were novices of both R and Excel, and we had several issues with everything from how R processes csv:s, to just figuring out the proper syntax to have R do what we wanted.

Sorry if my comment wasnt helpful, i was merely attempting to add some reflections from personal experience to the discussion.

I disagree with R being more useless without r studio. I'm not a fan of R overall, but I run everything in tmux+vim and R is the same way. I prefer it to Rstudio. It's popular, because it makes a few choices which are different many programming languages to be geared towards writing scripts for statistics. (e.g. index 0, assignments)

I'll second the utility of alternative environments to RStudio. For me, I love RStudio, but I spend too much time in Python (and occasionally dabbling in others) to use it all the time. So, for me it's Emacs Speaks Statistics, which is fantastic.

As a side benefit, the first time I tried dabbling in Julia, I was pleasantly surprised to have a familiar mature environment work with it out of the box.

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