[R] package memisc: recode examples

Peter Ehlers ehlers at ucalgary.ca
Wed Jul 25 21:57:33 CEST 2012

On 2012-07-25 09:29, Marion Wenty wrote:
> Thank you, John, for the clarification! :)
> I have written to the R core team pointing this out.
> Marion

I hope that you included the wording of an improved message.
I believe that I speak English reasonably well and I disagree
with John on this. I think that the message is in fact unambiguous.
I don't know what the German message is, but perhaps it is not
unambiguous. Perhaps the translation of "from" to "von" is at
fault, since that is certainly not an unambiguous translation.

If the intent were to say that the earlier-loaded package (here
'memisc') is masking a function in the later-loaded package
(here 'car') then the message would say something like
"the following object(s) are masked _by_ package:memisc". I find
it easy to remember that the latest-loaded package is always the
one doing the masking.

As it is now, when loading package A is followed by loading
package B, the message
"The following object(s) are masked from 'package:A'"
is equivalent to
"The following object(s) from 'package:A' are masked"
and perhaps that might be a more universally understood phrasing.

Having said that there is, in my opinion, no need to alter the
status quo, I'll nevertheless make the following suggestion.
It may be not too difficult to rewrite the function producing
the messages to say something like:
"Package B is masking:"
"from package:A", function1, function2
"from package:C", function3

But I confess that I have not looked at the code and hence
have no idea how much effort would be involved. I do feel
that R-Core has more important things to occupy them.

Peter Ehlers

> 2012/7/24 John Kane <jrkrideau at inbox.com>
>>> -----Original Message-----
>>> From: marion.wenty at gmail.com
>>> Sent: Tue, 24 Jul 2012 15:48:10 +0200
>>> To: e.vettorazzi at uke.de
>>> Subject: Re: [R] package memisc: recode examples
>>> I now tried
>>> find("recode",mode="function")
>>> and got
>>> [1] "package:car"    "package:memisc" - and got a warning
>>> message, which said:
>>> ##
>>> Lade nvtiges Paket: nnet
>>> Attache Paket: ?car?
>>> The following object(s) are masked from ?package:memisc?:
>>>      recode
>>> ##
>>> I would have interpreted this warning the other way around, but this
>>> might be a language problem of mine
>> So would I and I'm a native English speaker.  I just think that some
>> stats/programmers see the world in a very different way than "real" people.
>> :)
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