[R] Reading data from "clipboard"

Liaw, Andy andy_liaw at merck.com
Mon Mar 28 22:53:45 CEST 2005

> From: R_xprt_wannabe
> Dear List,
> As a way to learn R, I am trying out some of the
> examples shown in the Reference Cards.
> I use the following to read a column of numbers from
> Excel:
> x <- read.delim("clipboard")
> My questions are:
> 1. Why is it that the first number is omitted from the
> selected data range?  How do I tell R to pick up the
> first number as part of the entire selection?

It's probably because read.delim() has the argument `header' that is TRUE by
default, so unless you set that to FALSE, it treats the first row as column

> 2. The next thing I want to do once my data are read
> in the way described above is
> y <- ppoints(sort(x))
> but I get the following:
> Error in sort(x): 'x' must be atomic
> What does 'atomic' mean in this context?  How do I
> make 'x' atomic?

read.delim() outputs a data frame, which is a collection of variables.  In
your case it's probably just one variable.  You can do x <- x[[1]] to change
x into the first column of the data frame.

If you only have one column of data, scan() would be a better choice than
read.delim() (and friends).
> 3. While I understand there are other ways to
> accomplish the same thing, I seem to recall there is a
> way to invoke within R a spreadsheet-like window for
> data input, but I can't seem to locate the command for
> the life of me.

You're probably looking for data.entry().

> Any help is appreciated.
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