[R] Use and misuse of "update" function for non-models. Any views/recommendations??

Luke Tierney luke at stat.uiowa.edu
Tue Nov 20 14:54:42 CET 2007

On Tue, 20 Nov 2007, Prof Brian Ripley wrote:

> update() is generic, so the recommended approach would be to write a method 
> for your objects.
> Creating your own function update() in a package would probably not break too 
> much, as namespaces would protect most functions using the generic in stats. 
> But it could be very confusing to users.

Maybe.  update is generic with a netral set of argument names; on the
other hand, the _documentation_ of update is not generic -- it is
specific to updating models. So there is opportunity for confusion
from that direction.



> On Tue, 20 Nov 2007, Søren Højsgaard wrote:
>> Dear all,
>> I wonder if it is "bad style" (or something worse) to create an "update" 
>> function which does not work on model objects of the lm, glm etc. type. 
>> Specifically, I have some graph objects (graphs as mathematical objects, 
>> not as displays) which I want to alter and for that purpose I thought of 
>> writing an update function. Would doing so violate a "deeper philosophy" in 
>> the R system or have other unfortunate consequences. If so, I'm happy to 
>> hear other suggestions...
>> Regards
>> Søren
>> ______________________________________________
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Luke Tierney
Chair, Statistics and Actuarial Science
Ralph E. Wareham Professor of Mathematical Sciences
University of Iowa                  Phone:             319-335-3386
Department of Statistics and        Fax:               319-335-3017
    Actuarial Science
241 Schaeffer Hall                  email:      luke at stat.uiowa.edu
Iowa City, IA 52242                 WWW:  http://www.stat.uiowa.edu

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