I always install and load packages with ‘pacman’ and about 95% of the time I import/export data using ‘rio’. But, I don’t see many people using these packages in their R blog posts, or recommending these packages to users–especially new users–or in the example code posted here or on stackoverflow. I am curious about why this is the case. Are these packages not consistent with best practices for R coding? Do they reduce reproducibility of R scripts? Is there something else I’m missing?
I think these packages are great, particularly for new users. ‘pacman’ reduces the number of lines of code dedicated to installing and loading packages compared to base R. ‘rio’ allows my students to remember only the “import()” and “export()” commands to get almost any data file type into and out of R, compared to remembering, for example, read.csv, read_csv, or “fread()” just to import CSVs.
As I encourage my students to write more efficient R scripts and promote best practices, I find myself reflecting more on these issues with my own approach to writing R code.