Imai, Kosuke, Gary King, and Olivia Lau. (2008). ``Toward A Common Framework for Statistical Analysis and Development.'' Journal of Computational and Graphical Statistics, Vol. 17, No. 4 (December), pp. 892-913.



We propose a common framework for statistical analysis and software development built on and within the R language, including R's numerous existing packages. This framework, which has at its core a very general ontology of statistical methods, offers a simple unified structure and syntax that can encompass a large fraction of existing statistical procedures. We conjecture that it can be used to encompass and present simply a vast majority of existing statistical methods, without requiring changes in existing approaches, and regardless of the theory of inference on which they are based, notation with which they were developed, and programming syntax with which they have been implemented. This development enabled us, and should enable others, to design statistical software with a single, simple, and unified user interface that helps overcome the conflicting notation, syntax, jargon, and statistical methods existing across the methods subfields of numerous academic disciplines. The approach also enables one to build a graphical user interface that automatically includes any method encompassed within the framework. We hope that the result of this line of research will greatly reduce the time from the creation of a new statistical innovation to its widespread use by applied researchers whether or not they use or program in R.


Imai, Kosuke, Gary King, and Olivia Lau. ``Zelig: Everyone's Statistical Software.''

© Kosuke Imai
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