R is a programming language that has grown in popularity in recent times due to its ease of use, statistical application and its ability to handle big data sets, big data!
R was created by Ross Ihaka and Robert Gentleman at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, and is currently developed by the R Development Core Team, of which Chambers is a member. R is named partly after the first names of the first two R authors in about 1993. It is a programming language that is used for data manipulation, visualization and statistics. R is a command line programming language and is free and open source.
R vs. Traditional Spreadsheet Software:
Many users will be familiar with working in spreadsheet programs such as Microsoft Excel. The good news is that all the same functions (and more) are available in R. R gives users more flexibility in terms of how they can access, import, manipulate, query and analyse data, especially big data.
Reasons why R is better than Excel for data analyses:
- More powerful data manipulation capabilities.
- Easier automation.
- Faster computation.
- It reads any type of data.
- Easier project organization.
- It supports larger data sets.
- Reproducibility (important for detecting errors).
- Easier to find and fix errors.
- It’s free.
- It’s open source.
- Advanced Statistics capabilities.
- State-of-the-art graphics.
- It runs on many platforms.
- Anyone can contribute packages to improve its functionality.