[R] Scheme in R

Ed Kademan kademan at phz.com
Thu Dec 6 22:04:55 CET 2001

The initial authors of R said¹, "...we implemented the language by
first writing an interpreter for a Scheme subset and then
progressively mutating it to resemble S."  Further on in that article
they elaborated that their strategy was to create a parser that would
take expressions in S-like syntax and translate them to Scheme

Does R still work that way?  Can R be made to accept Scheme syntax
directly?  Can you build it in such a way that when you start it up
you get a Scheme read-eval-print-loop instead of the S-like
interactive environment?  I ask simply because I happen to like
Scheme/Lisp syntax.  But it also occurred to me that---considering the
ease with which you can implement specialized little languages in
Scheme---such an interface might make it easier to experiment with
things like extensions to model and graphics formulae.

1. @article{ig,
     author  = "Ihaka, Ross and Gentleman, Robert",
     title   = "R: A Language for Data Analysis and Graphics",
     journal = "Journal of Computational and Graphical Statistics",
     year    = 1996,
     volume  = 5,
     number  = 3,
     page    = 299,
     month   = sep}

Ed Kademan              508.651.3700
PHZ Capital Partners    508.653.1745 (fax)
321 Commonwealth Road   <kademan at phz.com>
Wayland, MA 01778
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