[R] workflow getting UTF-8 csv in and out of R on Mac (spreadsheet editor)

Kai Mx govokai at gmail.com
Fri Sep 2 13:03:20 CEST 2016

Hi all,

I am hoping for some advice on how to handle UTF-8 spreadsheet files in a
Mac environment - sort of off-topic, but still relevant for hopefully a
bunch of people.

I am using R on Mac OS 10.10. Sometimes I have the urge to actually look at
a large spreadsheet on the big screen or make some changes to the tables.
Since most of my colleagues live in the M$ Excel - world I tend to use
Excel 2011 as well. However, Excel does not handle UTF-8 (which I like
because of different system locales).
So I actually do a write.csv with file-encoding in macroman, but even then
Excel won't just open it and I will have to work my way through the

The other way around, it's even worse. I save the spreadsheet as macroman,
iconv it to utf-8 and then read.csv it to R.

It works, but it's just really messy. Is there a (preferably light-weight)
csv-spreadsheet Editor for Mac OS that you use? Open-Office? I would like
NOT to actually buy another Excel version. However, for collaboration, a
xls-export would be phenomenal.



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