[R] How to import sensitive data when multiple users collaborate on R-script?

Tom Wright tom at maladmin.com
Tue May 31 15:01:37 CEST 2016

My general approach to this is to put the function for loading data
into a separate file which is then sourced in the main analysis file.
Occasionally I'll use a construct like:

if file.exists("loadData_local.R")

Where loadData_generic.R contains the path to some sample (non-sensitive) data.

On Tue, May 31, 2016 at 6:44 AM, Nikolai Stenfors
<nikolai.stenfors at gapps.umu.se> wrote:
> We conduct medical research and our datafiles therefore contain sensitive
> data, not to be shared in the cloud (Dropboc, Box, Drive, Bitbucket, GitHub).
> When we collaborate on a r-analysis-script, we stumble upon the following
> annoyance. Researcher 1 has a line in the script importing the sensitive
> data from his/her personal computer. Researcher 2 has to put an additional
> line importing the data from his/her personal computer. Thus, we have lines
> in the script that are unnecessery for one or the other researcher. How can
> we avoid this? Is there another way of conducting the collaboration. Other
> workflow?
> I'm perhaps looking for something like:
> "If the script is run on researcher 1 computer, load file from this
> directory. If the script is run on researcher 2 computer, load data from
> that directory".
> Example:
> ## Import data-------------------------------------
> # Researcher 1 import data from laptop1, unnecessery line for Researcher 2
> data <- read.table("/path/to_researcher1_computer/sensitive_data.csv")
> # Researcher 2 import data from laptop2 (unnecessery line for Researcher 1)
> data <- read.table("/path/to_researcher2_computer/sensitive_data.csv")
> ## Clean data
> data$var1 <- NULL
> ## Analyze data
> boxplot(data$var2)
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