Thoughts about the S+ GUI

For more than a year and a half, I have been releasing pROC version in two flavors: R and S+. The S+ version has a great advantage (or disadvantage for some) over R: it has a GUI, a graphical user interface. This is especially useful for users who do not want to learn programming R and who prefer a clic-and-point interface.

However, this dual-version comes with a cost. Here are some thoughts about it.

So, would I start a new project with a GUI in S+? Probably not. I would first investigate the R integration plugin of SPSS. There are also some GUI for R, such as Rcmdr. I can't tell if they are a manageable option, as I have never tested it. Another option would be to create a web interface, but R doesn't have CGI and it would require interfacing with another language such as perl. Anyway, I would not recommend anybody to start an S+ GUI project.

What to expect of pROC in the future? Let me say I don't expect to stop its development soon. The version 1.5 of pROC, which will be released very soon, has a new sample size computation function, and a dedicated window in S+. In the long term (> 1 year) however, the situation might change. I will leave the University of Geneva in just over a year; will I still have access to S+? This problem is typical from proprietary software and its licensing. I won't pay for it, and I don't know if TIBCO provides licenses for application developers.

Xavier Robin
Published Saturday, November 19, 2011 19:37 CET
Permalink: /blog/2011/11/19/thoughts-about-the-splus-gui
Tags: pROC
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