[R] S4 vs S3. New Package

Martin Morgan mtmorgan at fhcrc.org
Sat Nov 9 23:54:14 CET 2013

On 11/09/2013 11:59 AM, Rolf Turner wrote:
> For my take on the issue see fortune("strait jacket").
>      cheers,
>      Rolf Turner
> P. S.  I said that quite some time ago and I have seen nothing
> in the intervening years to change my views.

Mileage varies; the Bioconductor project attains a level of interoperability and 
re-use (http://www.nature.com/nbt/journal/v31/n10/full/nbt.2721.html) that would 
be difficult with a less formal class system.

>      R. T.
> On 11/10/13 04:22, daniel schnaider wrote:
>> Hi,
>> I am working on a new credit portfolio optimization package. My question is
>> if it is more recommended to develop in S4 object oriented or S3.
>> It would be more naturally to develop in object oriented paradigm, but
>> there is many concerns regarding S4.
>> 1) Performance of S4 could be an issue as a setter function, actually
>> changes the whole object behind the scenes.

Depending on implementation, updating S3 objects could as easily trigger copies; 
this is a fact of life in R. Mitigate by modelling objects in a vector 
(column)-oriented approach rather than the row-oriented paradigm of Java / C++ / 

Martin Morgan

>> 2) Documentation. It has been really hard to find examples in S4. Most
>> books and articles consider straightforward S3 examples.
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