◾ Using External Modules: The Python Interface to R
Biologists have a constant need to statistically analyze their data and plot them. R (www.r-project.org/) is one of the most frequently used pieces of soware for statistical computing and graphical analyses. In many situations, you may nd it very useful to be able to call R from a Python script.
For example, if you have to calculate the mean value and the standard deviation of several distributions of numbers, each recorded in a dierent le, and then you want to automatically create one or more plots, you can delegate many tasks of your calculation to R and use Python to connect them. In this chapter, we assume that you already know how R works. If not, we strongly suggest that you familiarize yourself with the basics of R before reading this chapter.