Recently I whined/whinged or generally complained about a few sharp edges in some powerful R systems.
In each case I was treated very politely, listened to, and actually got fixes back in a very short timeframe from volunteers. That is really great and probably one of the many reasons R is a great ecosystem.
Please read on for my list of
- While discussing plotting market data I ran into a corner-case with ggplot2. Even though I figured out how to work around it, it is now fixed by the ggplot2 team!
- I wrote an entire article denouncing a default setting of a single argument in the ranger random forest library. The ranger author himself replied with a fix that is very clever and mathematically well-founded (I suspect he had be researching this issue a while on his own).
- I complained about summary presentation fidelity in base R
summary.default. You guessed it: the volunteers have generously fielded a patch!
Like any real-world system R represents a sequence of history and compromises. Only unused systems can be perfect without compromise. It is very evident how eager and able the volunteers who maintain it are to make sure R represents very good compromises.
I would like to offer a sincere appreciation and thank you from me to the R community. If this is what you can expect using R it is yet another strong argument for R.
And personal thanks to: Martin Maechler, Hadley Wickham, and Marvin N. Wright.
Data Scientist and trainer at Win Vector LLC. One of the authors of Practical Data Science with R.