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A First Path Through the R On-Line Help for Beginners
There is no substitute for a good book or two, such as
Introductory:
"Introductory Statistics with R", Dalgaard.
"An R and S-PLUS companion to applied regression", J. Fox
More advanced:
"Modern Applied Statistics with S", Venables & Ripley,
"The (New) S Language", Becker, Chambers, & Wilks,
"S Programming", Venables & Ripley
You should also read the documentation that comes with R,
"An Introduction to R",
"The R Language Definition",
and "R Data Import/Export"
at a minimum. If you have R, you have these documents, and
they tell you a lot of things you need to know.
R has extensive on-line help. It is so extensive that it can
be difficult to find what you need. The purpose of this note
is to provide a first path through this on-line documentation.
THIS IS NOT AN INDEX. Use help.search for that (I do). It is
a small selection of help pages you should read thoroughly to
move from total novice to competent apprentice level.
To obtain on-line help about a one-word topic, type
help(topic)
or ?topic
at the command prompt. If the topic is an operator or keyword
(like "+" or "for") you will have to put quotation marks around
it. You may use quotation marks for other topics as well.
THE HELP SYSTEM ITSELF
?help
?help.search
?help.start
THE R LANGUAGE AND BASIC ARITHMETIC
?Syntax # capital S required
?Arithmetic
?Comparison
?Control
?ifelse
?switch
?Extract # Read with extreme care repeatedly
?Logic
?Paren
OTHER ARITHMETIC FUNCTIONS
?abs
?Bessel
?ceiling
?log
?Special
?Trig
BASIC DATA TYPES
?NA
?logical
?numeric
?character
?list
?matrix
?array
?data.frame
?factor
BASIC OPERATIONS ON VECTORS
?c Construct column vector
?cumsum
?interaction
?length
?"[" (same as ?Extract. Read it again.)
?lapply
?na.action
?na.omit
?names
?order
?rank
?rep
?replace
?rev
?seq
?sequence
?sort
?sum
LOGICAL VECTORS
?all
?any
?ifelse
?subset
?which
?"%in%"
?"&"
STRING (CHARACTER) OPERATORS
?letters
?charmatch
?chartr
?grep
?match
?nchar
?paste
?pmatch
?sprintf
?strsplit
?strwidth
?strwrap
?substr
?system (like `...` in sh)
MATRICES
?apply
?cbind
?col
?colMeans
?colnames
?colSums
?det
?diag
?dim
?dimnames
?drop
?eigen
?lower.tri
?ncol Same as ?nrow
?outer
?qr
?rbind
?row
?rowMeans
?rownames
?rowSums
?rowsum
?solve
?svd
?t Transpose
?"[" Again, with special attention to 'drop'
?"%*%" Matrix multiplication
?"%o%"
?"%x%"
ELEMENTARY DESCRIPTVE STATISTICS AND TESTS
?binom.test
?chisq.test
?cor.test
?fivenum
?IQR
?ks.test
?mad
?mean
?median
?medpolish
?prop.test
?quantile
?range
?residuals
?sd
?stem
?summary
?table
?t.test
?var
?var.test F test
?weighted.mean
?wilcox.test
MODEL FITTING
?AIC
?anova
?aov
?coef
?fitted.values
?formula ESSENTIAL reading for model fitting
?influence.measures
?lm Fits linear models
?predict
?residuals
?vcov
INPUT/OUTPUT
?connections Opening & closing files
?count.fields
?data
?load
?readBin
?read.csv
?readLines
?read.table
?save
?scan
?write
?writeBin
?writeLines
?write.table
PLOTTING
?abline
?axis
?barplot
?boxplot
?density
?Devices
?dev.off
?dev.print
?dotchart
?hist
?legend
?lines
?par Reread until your eyes water!
?plot
?points
?qqplot
?scatter.smooth
?stripchart
DISTRIBUTIONS AND RANDOM NUMBERS
Distributions have d (density), p (pdf),
q inverse pdf (quantile), and r (random generator) functions.
?dbeta
?dbinom
?dcauchy
?dchisq
?dexp
?df
?dgamma
?dgeom
?dhyper
?dlnorm
?dlogis
?dmultinom
?dnbinom
?dnorm
?dpois
?dt
?dunif
?dweibull
?dwilcox
help(package=mvtnorm)
?sample
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