R meets XKCD

July 14, 2011
By

(This article was first published on One R Tip A Day, and kindly contributed to R-bloggers)

Being a big fan of XKCD and, of course, of the R programming language, I thought that a package which allows to display my favorite strips  would something (useless) but cool!
So, mimicking the approach (and the code) of the fortunes package (thanks Achim Zeileis!), I created a simple package (names RXKCD) which allows the user to displays his favorite XKCD strip by selecting the specific number, randomly or simply displaying the current strip.
You can install the package using:
if (!require('RJSONIO')) install.packages('RJSONIO', repos = 'http://cran.r-project.org')
if (!require('png')) install.packages('png', repos = 'http://cran.r-project.org')
install.packages("RXKCD", repos="http://R-Forge.R-project.org")
And you can use it by typing:
library(RXKCD)
searchXKCD("someone is wrong")
getXKCD(386)

Update: The updated version of the package , which is available from CRAN (just type install.packages("RXKCD") ), allows the user to save the xkcd metadata database in a local directory (.Rconfig) and update it in order to have access to the latest XKCD info: see ?saveConfig and ?updateConfig.