Re: [S] Splus 3.3 vs 4.0 4.2 4.5 ...

Tony Plate (Tony.Plate@mcs.vuw.ac.nz)
Sat, 23 May 1998 10:17:27 +1200


Z. Todd Taylor writes:
>
> 1) Arcane is only bad if the oddities are gratuitous. What
> makes S arcane is what makes it powerful.

In general, I'd agree, but not with everything.
I'd argue that the variable scoping laws are
arcane and subtract power. The way dataframes are stored in
models as a name (and formulas too, from memory), combined
with the fact that functions cannot easily access variables in
intermediate higher frames, makes it very cumbersome to write
some functions which call modeling functions.

And I'm not sure if "arcane" is sufficiently negative to
describe S+'s garbage collection (or lack thereof) and
the resulting necessity for things like the For() function.

It's interesting to note that the R language, while based
on S, differs in these two respects.

Tony Plate (a keen, but sometimes frustrated S+ user)
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