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Quoting in R

Many R users appear to be big fans of "code capturing" or "non standard evaluation" (NSE) interfaces. In this note we will discuss quoting and non-quoting interfaces in R.

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Quasiquotation in R via bquote()

In August of 2003 Thomas Lumley added bquote() to R 1.8.1. This gave R and R users an explicit Lisp-style quasiquotation capability. bquote() and quasiquotation are actually quite powerful. Professor Thomas Lumley should get, and should continue to receive, a lot of credit and thanks for introducing the concept into R.

In fact bquote() is already powerful enough to build a version of dplyr 0.5.0 with quasiquotation semantics quite close (from a user perspective) to what is now claimed in tidyeval/rlang.

Let’s take a look at that.

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R Tip: How to Pass a formula to lm

R tip : how to pass a formula to lm().

Often when modeling in R one wants to build up a formula outside of the modeling call. This allows the set of columns being used to be passed around as a vector of strings, and treated as data. Being able to treat controls (such as the set of variables to use) as manipulable values allows for very powerful automated modeling methods.

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