R-Bloggers Steadily Growing

February 15, 2012

(This article was first published on Graph of the Week, and kindly contributed to R-bloggers)

Number of blogs aggregated into the R-Bloggers news site.



R-Bloggers is a website devoted to news and tutorials related to the R programming language. The content is generated by a growing number of R statisticians (as reflected in the chart above), providing a wealth of information.

The site itself is aesthetically pleasing, showing the header of each article. It’s based on RSS, so once your site has been approved and linked, any new articles are automatically loaded onto the site. This provides important exposure for the original author of the work as well as a valuable back link to their blog.

Unlike other news aggregation sites (which work by submitting links, not by automatically feeding RSS), you aren’t penalized for promoting your own site. This is especially important for authors wanting to contribute something meaningful to the world.

For those visiting the site mining for information, R-Bloggers provides full search capability as well as a listing of the contributing blogs should a user want to visit them directly.

Looking at the graph, you can see that the site has had a stable supply of R-related blogs coming in each month, with a steady linear trend upwards as the years progress.  A cap exists out there somewhere, as there are a finite number of R blogs out in the wild, but that number appears to be unknown. For now, the site continues to grow and provide a valuable service to the R community.


1) How many R bloggers are still out there not yet feeding into this site?
2) Will development on the R platform continue?
3) Are there other blog aggregator sites like this one for other niches?

This graph was generated using the ‘ggplot2‘ package within the R programming language:

ggplot(rblogger.frame, aes(Date)) +
 geom_line(aes(y = as.numeric(row.names(rblogger.frame))), size=1.1) +
 geom_smooth(aes(y = as.numeric(row.names(rblogger.frame))), size=1.1, method="lm", na.rm=FALSE) +
 scale_x_datetime(major="1 month", format='%b %Y') +
 ylab("Total Bloggers") +
 opts(title="R-Bloggers Growth", 
  axis.text.x = theme_text(angle = 270, hjust = 1, size = 7),
  panel.background = theme_blank(),
  plot.margin = unit(c(0,4,0,0), "lines"))

Further Reading (the following all have at least 3 stars or are unrated):

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