Lisp-Stat to Java to R

Balasubramanian Narasimhan

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This paper will describe my experiences in moving on from Lisp-Stat to Java to R. I was introduced to Lisp-Stat in 1989 and used it actively for teaching and research over the next 10 years. My use of Lisp-Stat culminated in a joint project with Hani Doss on Bayesian Sensitivity Analysis and it remains the largest piece of software I wrote using Lisp-Stat. At the time the project was completed, the only open statistical system that could deliver the goods was Lisp-Stat. In this article, I will describe how the power of Lisp, underlying statistical components and dynamic graphics were exploited in the project. When development on Lisp-Stat slowed down, Java was coming into its own as an important language and R became an open source collaborative project. Of course, I have moved on and I use R for most of my work today. I will touch upon my experience with Java and R briefly.

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