Getting started with the R programming language and using RStudio
For someone like me, who has only had some programming experience in Python, the syntax of R feels alienating initially. However, I believe it’s just a matter of time before adapting to the unique logicality of a new language. And indeed, the grammar of R flows more naturally to me after having to practice for a while, and I began to grasp its kind of remarkable beauty, that has captivated the heart of countless statisticians throughout the years.
If you don’t know what R is, it’s basically a programming language created for statistician by statistician. Hence, it easily becomes one of the most fluid and powerful tools in the field of Data Science.
Here I’d like to walk through my study notes with the most explicit step-by-step directions to introduce you to the world of R.
Why Learn R for Data Science?
Before diving in, you might want to know why should you learn R for Data Science. There are two major reasons:
Powerful Analytic Packages for Data Science
Firstly, R has an extremely vast package ecosystem. It provides robust tools to master all the core skill sets of Data Science, from data manipulation, data visualization, to machine learning. The vivid community keeps the R language’s functionalities growing and improving.
High Industry Popularity and Demand
With its great analytical power, R is becoming the lingua franca for data science. It is widely used in the industry and is in heavy use at several of the best companies who are hiring Data Scientists including Google and Facebook. It is one of the highly sought after skills for a Data Science job.
Quickstart Installation Guide
To start programming with R on your computer, you need two things: R and RStudio.
Install R Language
You have to first install the R language itself to your computer (It doesn’t come by default). To download R, go to CRAN, https://cloud.r-project.org/ (the comprehensive R archive network). Choose your system and select the latest version t