The key to well-documented, well-tested and easily-distributed R code is the package. . You’ll also learn roxygen2 to document your code so others (including future you!) can understand what’s going on, and testthat to avoid future breakages. The class will consist of a series of demonstrations and hands on exercises.
- Package basics The basic structure of a package, where to put code, and the workflow that allows you to take your package code out for a test drive.
- Documentation and namespaces For your code to be useful, it must be well-documented. We’ll solve these problems with roxygen2 with documentation, and rmarkdown for vignettes and READMEs.
- Automated testing Maintaining R code requires advanced planning. You can simplify debugging, spot errors, and ensure that your package is stable by creating unit tests with the help of testhat.
- Releasing your package We’ll work through R CMD check, and the process of distributing your package on GitHub or CRAN.
Target audience: This class will be a good fit for you if you’ve developed a number of R scripts, and now you want to learn:
- a more efficient workflow, iterating between writing code and checking that it works
- how to document your code so others (including future you!) can understand what’s going on
- automated testing principles, so that if you accidentally break something in your code you find out right away
- how to package and distribute your code to others, whether it’s inside your research group, your company, or to the whole world.
Instructions: Participants should bring a laptop setup to build R packages. Detailed instructions are available here.