Anonymous Monk has asked for the wisdom of the Perl Monks concerning the following question:

Hey monks,

I'm starting a new data science job and it looks like Python and R are my two options. I truly love Perl and if I have to learn a new language I'd like to use what I know/enjoy as much as possible. So the question - for those of you who know multiple languages, is python or R the better value in 2017?

Thanks! Interested to hear what you guys think!

Replies are listed 'Best First'.
Re: [OT] Python vs R
by Your Mother (Archbishop) on May 30, 2017 at 14:46 UTC

    I donít know either (to speak of, any hacker can hack any language with a little time and a lot of docs and Iíve toyed with Python). Many of the big data tools are Python based. R strikes me as more of an academic tool but someone might need to correct me there. If you like Perl, please consider checking the toolbase for the given tasks you get. If there is something missing or something you could fix, go for it. The more libraries any high level language has, the more likely it is to be adopted. And the more one tries to port code, the better one understands the problem space so itís a win for you too.

      R strikes me as more of an academic tool

      Specifically, for people doing a lot of statistics.

      Python is actually pretty similar to Perl, but without the dollar signs and without the TIMTOWTDI.

        Given that Python is 100% class/object based inherently, I'd say it's far closer to Perl 6 than it is Perl 5, while enforcing specific indentation.

Re: [OT] Python vs R
by zentara (Archbishop) on May 30, 2017 at 18:53 UTC
    From what I see, Python is very popular with it's Tensorflow, which does advanced data analysis, like R. Julia also works well with Tensorflow.

    I'm not really a human, but I play one on earth. ..... an animated JAPH
Re: [OT] Python vs R
by morgon (Priest) on Jun 01, 2017 at 01:34 UTC
    If you like idiosyncrasies in languages (as Perl does) then R is the way to go (it even has not one but at least two oo-system), which is to say R is the more difficult language (ok - nothing could be simpler than Python evidently).

    And R has some really powerful packages (I like eg. ggplot2).

    But at the end of the day R is a language for statistics, so it depends on how much you know about that.

    If you know what a linear model is then R is clearly the "better value" as there are a lot more people that claim to know Python then then there are R-specialists.

    But if you don't have the maths then R is kind of pointless....

    So the summary answer is: It depends. On your math skills mainly.

Re: [OT] Python vs R
by duff (Parson) on Jun 01, 2017 at 19:27 UTC
    Interesting ... I'd say python is the better value as there are ways to branch off into other subjects or do more general purpose programming. You can do general purpose stuff in R, but it's more work for some things. Though, personally, I'd use Perl + PDL if at all possible :-)

Re: [OT] Python vs R
by stevieb (Canon) on May 30, 2017 at 14:28 UTC

    Please define "value".

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