This is the staRt

It’s time.

I’m going to learn R and I will do it properly. The last time I touched the software was in an introductory stats class for basic inferential statistics, many years ago.

R is a free, open-source software for doing statistical analyses and making beautiful graphs for your data.

There are a few ways you can run the program – from the console (if you’re really hardcore; Fig 1), from R itself (Fig 2), or you can use an IDE such as RStudio (Fig 3). Depending on what suits you, you might choose to use the desktop version of RStudio (free, and stores files locally on your computer) or the server version (free and paid version, use R from a browser)

Personally, I use RStudio Desktop because frankly it’s easier and prettier (haha).

Image of using R through the terminal
Figure 1. Using R in the console of a RaspberryPi – this method makes me feel like a hacker in a movie
Image of using R in Windows
Figure 2. Using R for Windows directly – less intense than the terminal and more options. You can see the console is open in the image.
Image of using RStudio for Windows
Figure 3. RStudio on my desktop. There are 4 panes (from top to bottom, left to right): Source (where you type your code), Console (basically the terminal, where you test your code and where you find your output), Environment (stores all the variables and objects) and Files (file directory where you can find your projects and workspace).

Installing R

There are a heap of posts and videos already out there on how to set up and use R/RStuido on your computer but basically all you need to do is:

  1. Download and install R for your operating system (Windows/Mac/Linux etc) – You’re pretty much done after this if you’re wanting to use R by itself
  2. Download and install RStudio for Desktop

And that’s basically it.

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