[Rd] Boxplot issues (formerly posted to R-help in error)

S Ellison S.Ellison at lgc.co.uk
Fri Jun 22 16:56:55 CEST 2007

Boxplot and bxp seem to have changed behaviour a bit of late (R 2.4.1). Or maybe I am mis-remembering.

An annoying feature is that while at=3:6 will work, there is no way of overriding the default xlim of 0.5 to n+0.5. That prevents plotting boxes on, for example, interval scales - a useful thing to do at times. I really can see no good reason for bxp to hard-core the xlim=c(0.5, n+0.5) in the function body; it should be a parameter default conditional on horizontal=, not hard coded.

Also, boxplot does not drop empty groups. I'm sure it used to. I know it is good to be able to see where a factor level is unpopulated, but its a nuisance with fractional factorials and some nested or survey problems when many are known to be missing and are of no interest. Irrespective of whether my memory is correct, the option would be useful. How hard can it be to add a 'drop.empty=F' default to boxplot to allow it to switch?

Obviously, these are things I can fix locally. But who 'owns' boxplot so I can provide suggested code to them for later releases? 

Steve Ellison

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