New R features in Bio7 1.5

February 20, 2011
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(This article was first published on » R, and kindly contributed to R-bloggers)

Bio7 1.5 has been released and comes with new functionalities for R.

For all who don’t know Bio7 here is a short description:

Bio7 is a integrated development environment for ecological modelling based on the Rich-Client-Platform concept of the Java IDE Eclipse. The Bio7 platform contains several perspectives which arrange several views for a special purpose useful for the development and analysis of ecological models. One special perspective bundles a feature rich GUI (Graphical User Interface) for the statistical software R.
For the bidirectional communication between Java and R the Rserve application is used (as a backend to evaluate R code and transfer data from and to Java).
The Bio7 R perspective (see figure below) is divided into a R-Shell view on the left side (conceptual the R side) and a Table view on the right side (conceptual the Java side).
Data can be imported to a spreadsheet, edited and then transferred to the R workspace. Vice versa data from R can be transferred to a sheet of the Table view and then exported e.g. to an Excel or OpenOffice file.

New in Bio7 1.5:
In Bio7 1.5 you can now import and export Excel 2007-2010 files and then transfer them to the R workspace.

In addition vector data from the R workspace can now be transferred horizontally or vertically to an existing sheet (at selected coordinates) of the Table view.


Also the R help was improved in this release. With the “?” action a help for R commands can be opened in the R perspective with the integrated Bio7 webbrowser. Just type the command (without the “?”) in the textfield of the R-Shell invoke the action and the browser will be opened with the help context.

Beside this new methods some minor improvements in the R-Shell view helps in the selection of data for R analysis. For example select several variables and transfer them to the RShell textfield with the “A” or the “C” key at the cursor position.

Informations and download:
To get an overview of the available Bio7 R features please have a look at the Flash tutorials (and the documentation) on the Bio7 website which will be updated in the next days and weeks.

The Windows version of Bio7 1.5 comes bundled with the latest R release (and can even be installed on a USB stick). A Linux version is available, too and a beta version for MacOSX is planned as well as 64-bit releases for Windows and Linux.

Bio7 is an OpenSource application and can be downloaded here
Release notes and installation details can be found here.

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