La opinión sobre R de una pobre señora

Me llegan noticias de una pobre señora que, se conoce, tiene un blog en el que habla de cosas que, da la impresion, le trascienden. Dice lo siguiente:

Contrary to what  some people seem to think, R is definitely not the next big thing, either. I am always surprised when people ask me why I think that, because to my mind it is obvious.

Vamos, que no cree en R y que, además, esa idea suya le parece la más obvia del mundo. Para apoyar su argumento, muestra el siguiente ejemplo de código en R, supuestamente muy feo (más, de hecho de lo que se imagina):

a<--0.45
sigma<-0.00000
y<-a*x+xnorm*sigma
r<-cor(x,y)
plot(-4:4, -4:4, xlab= 'x', ylab= 'y', main= "", sub = "",type = "n")
points(x,y,pch=19,cex=0.2)
legend(-3.9, 3.8,substr(paste("r=",r), 1, 8), bg='gray90')

¡Alma de Dios! ¿Qué es xnorm, que en mi libro no sale? ¿Dónde defines el x que luego quieres pintar? ¿Qué coeficiente de correlación esperas definiendo la varianza igual a cero? ¿Tratas de usar las opciones más enrevesadas y añadir parámetros innecesarios por afear el código o porque no lo sabes hacer mejor?

Ay, ay, ay, qué señora…

Nota: La entrada que aquí discuto ha atraído la atención de otros blogueros a los que sigo. En fin…

5 comentarios sobre “La opinión sobre R de una pobre señora

  1. AnnMaria 15 abril, 2010 23:22

    The R code was copied from an example I found on line.

    Every time I mention anything negative about a programming language (or any language – a lot of people were not happy that I commented on Esperanto) there are people who believe that is the greatest thing since sliced bread and if I only spoke Esperanto or programmed in R then I would not be so ignorant and see that it really is the answer to everything and world peace.

    My point, which I stand by, is not that I am an expert on R, that R doesn’t do graphics or even that R does not work well for some things, but rather if you even LOOK at R code – bug-free or not, compilable or not – it should be evident that this is not how the average person uses a computer. If we are talking about something that is going to be used by a large number of people, R is not it.

    I read in response to another blog
    http://www.iq.harvard.edu/blog/sss/archives/2010/04/the_inevitable.shtml

    The comment,
    “If you think that R needs a point and click GUI, you can build one.”

    This really made me laugh and it illustrates my point perfectly. The average person does not think when they look at DOS, “Gee,I should write a Window (or better yet, Mac) OS.”

    How many people use computers now compared to when you had to build your own from a kit from Radio Shack?

    Maybe the vast majority of people who use statistics SHOULD be programmers – that is debatable and I could argue either side of that issue – but there are NOT a vast number of people out there who are going to be programmers whether they should be or not.

    A point I don’t think is debatable is that we would be much better off if a vast number of people could perform statistics and understand statistical analyses. They aren’t going to be doing it with R.

    Maybe “young statisticians” will. However, I would not think any product aimed at the young-statistician-and-people-who-work-at-Google market is going to be getting a lot of venture capital money.

    As for SAS/Graph, you can do a lot with it but I am not a big fan of that. Personally, if I were using SAS I would do the coding in SAS to create the type of analytic dataset desired, and do the graphics in SAS Enterprise Guide.

  2. Ester 16 abril, 2010 12:57

    How so quaint! Why do you call her a «pobre senora»? Do you really have to make personal attacks to make your point?

  3. datanalytics 16 abril, 2010 18:56

    If the statement about R would have come from an undergraduate student, I would have not bothered to answer. If it had come from a reputable statistician and had been properly constructed around facts and insightful ideas, I would have taken it into consideration.

    However, the statement came from a lady who claimed to have a «basket of degrees», self-promoted herself onto an authoritative pedestal, and then clumsily opened her mouth to make a derisory judgement on a computer language, R, that she obviously fails to command.

    Humble and wrong can be admitted and forgiven. Arrogant and correct can be liked or disliked (and ultimately, useful). But both arrogant and clumsy, in my opinion, properly deserves the epithet I used.

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