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Python Displacing R As The Programming Language For Data Science

While R has traditionally been the programming language of choice for data scientists, it is quickly ceding ground to Python.

While there are several reasons for the shift, perhaps the biggest one is that Python is general purpose and comparatively easy to learn whereas R remains a somewhat complex programming environment to master.

In a world increasingly dependent on data and starved for data scientists, “easy” wins.

R: Not Really A Language

Part of the reason people struggle to learn R is that it’s not really a language. As R expert John Cook points out, R “is an interactive environment for doing statistics,” not really a programming language. As he suggests, “I find it more helpful to think of R as having a programming language than being a programming language.”

R, then, doesn’t really look like a traditional programming language, which makes it that much harder for would-be R developers to grasp its nuances.

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