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Leisch, Friedrich (2007): R behind the scenes: Using S the (un)usual way. Department of Statistics: Technical Reports, No.12
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Abstract

R is not only a program for analyzing and visualizing data, it is an open and programmable software environment. It can not only easily access other programs written in a wide variety of languages, but also be accessed itself from other programs. As such, it can be seen as the computational Swiss army knife of statistics. Connecting a program to R can be surprisingly simple, and once the connection is established, the perhaps largest existing collection of statistical methodology is available through a unified interface. Embedding R can save a lot of human time by automating routine tasks, but more importantly, it often gives a simple way of making our methods accessible to a much wider audience.