I'm using the %rmagic extension. For plotting stuff it works similar to the pylab inline backend so that it plays well with the qt and notebook frontends. But it's not possible to redirect rich data display to some external app (say xdg-open) from the classic console frontend.
Also the %rmagic extension is unnecessarily forcing inline graphic output. rpy2.interactive.process_revents does a good job for the x11 dev (and it allows for interactive selection too) and IMHO an option should be provided to turn off the inline mode in order to be able to plot to another device.
So this is and && or || of two feature requests:
1 - allow to configure an external app to show images (I would extend this to: allow an external to show rich content in general)
2 - allow to use r devs as graphic backends (this could be desirable even in the qt and notebook frontends, given the ||-case)
Continued from this mailing list thread.
Yes, I think something like a %Rgraphicsdevice magic would make sense.