[R] terminology for frames and environments

Roger D. Peng rpeng at jhsph.edu
Mon Jun 14 04:53:03 CEST 2004

Your understanding agrees with mine.  I always figured that the parent 
environment is determined by the lexical scope while the parent frame is 
determined by the function call stack.


Gabor Grothendieck wrote:

> In ?exists it says:
> inherits: should the enclosing frames of the environment be searched?
> I believe what it is saying is that if inherits is TRUE and it fails
> to find the variable it will look in the parent environment and
> the parent of the parent, etc. (as opposed to looking in the calling
> frame next and the caller of the caller, etc.)
> Now I thought that standard terminology in R was:
> 1. enclosing environment or parent environment if one wanted to
> refer to the parent relative to the parent/child hierarchy 
> of environments
> or
> 2. calling frame or parent frame if one
> wanted to refer to a parent relative to the environments
> corresponding to the functions in the stack 
> of currently outstanding function calls
> but here we seem to be referring to a parent frame as a #1. 
> Could someone please clarify what standard terminology is?
> Thanks.
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Roger D. Peng

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