[Rd] write.table

Prof Brian Ripley Prof Brian Ripley <ripley@stats.ox.ac.uk>
Wed, 6 Dec 2000 10:13:31 +0000 (GMT)

> From: Peter Dalgaard BSA <p.dalgaard@biostat.ku.dk>
> Date: 06 Dec 2000 11:05:32 +0100
> Prof Brian Ripley <ripley@stats.ox.ac.uk> writes:
> > and the names get converted during that process to valid names.
>                                                      ^^^^^^^^^^^
> Just to pick a nit: Could we make a habit of distinguishing between
> "names" and "identifiers"? The latter being the syntactical term in
> the R language, briefly the names that you don't need to use get() to
> access. "123" and "Height in cm" are valid names, but not valid
> identifiers.

The argument is called `check.names', and has description

check.names: if `TRUE' then the names of the variables in the data
          frame are checked to ensure that they are valid variable
          names.  If necessary they are adjusted (by `make.names') so
          that they are.

So `make.names' should be renamed as `make.identifiers'.  That is
described as

make.names               package:base               R Documentation

Make Legal R Names Out of Strings


     Make legal R names out of every `names[i]' string. Invalid
     characters are translated to `"."'.

More plausibly, you are proposing a new distinction ....

Brian D. Ripley,                  ripley@stats.ox.ac.uk
Professor of Applied Statistics,  http://www.stats.ox.ac.uk/~ripley/
University of Oxford,             Tel:  +44 1865 272861 (self)
1 South Parks Road,                     +44 1865 272860 (secr)
Oxford OX1 3TG, UK                Fax:  +44 1865 272595

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