The shiny package, the R package from RStudio that makes it easy to build simple interactive interfaces for R scripts, is now available on CRAN. This will make it easier for R programmers to install and use shiny, and to run the interfaces they create from a local web browser.
The next step is to be able to publish interactive interfaces for others to use, and it looks like things are getting closer on that front as well. RStudio will soon publish an open-source "shiny server" for Linux which you can use to deploy interactive R-based applications to your own Web server. You can see a few examples of such applications in action already:
- Compare stocks over a selected date range
- Calculate sample size required for two-sample experiments
- Build a predictive model for height and weight of schoolchildren
These applications are running on a pre-release version of Shiny Server, and are attractive, fast and responsive. (This comes as no surprise given that Jeffrey Horner, the lead developer of the RApache Project, was involved in the shiny server development.) RStudio also plans to sell a value-added version of Shiny Server to businesses later in 2013.
In other 'shiny' news, Yihui Xie's knitr package now includes the ability to create a shiny-based "R notebook", which shows the Markdown code for a knitr document side-by-side with the output document itself. You can see what it looks like in this example.
RStudio blog: An update on shiny