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Testing Geospatial R Packages on Implementations of the R Language and Platforms

DOI

This is a repository for my master thesis for the Master of Science in Geospatial Technologies.

Abstract

R is a programming language for statistical computation and graphics. Besides the commonly used, GNU R, there are other alternative R implementations that claim to have advantages compared to the GNU R. Unfortunately, it is not clear how will geospatial R packages behave on these implementations since these packages often rely on system libraries which installed at the system level. System libraries also depend on the platform where the R is running. To find this information, this research aims to explore the compatibility of geospatial R packages on different R implementation and platform. This research also aims to see which R implementation and platform has the best performance.

To make the exploration easier, container technology is used to install system dependencies and R implementations. All system dependencies from sysreqsdb are installed for geospatial R packages. From this exploration, it is found that not all R implementations are compatible with geospatial packages. Problems found can be grouped into three categories: System Dependencies, Unsupported Implementation, and Running Time Error. GNU R and Microsoft R Open (MRO) are the only R implementations that compatibles with geospatial R packages.

A benchmarking R package called altRnative is created to run the benchmarking across the successful combination. The benchmark result shows that GNU R has a little bit better performance (1.2x) compared to MRO regardless of the platforms.

Reproducibility self-assessment: 3, 3, 3, 3, 3 (input data, preprocessing, methods, computational environment, results)

Technical Stuff for the Thesis Writing

This thesis is created by using https://github.com/ismayc/thesisdown with the cover and the declaration of academic integrity adapted from Luuk's Master Thesis

Related Repositories

  • dockeRs: A collection of docker image of various R implementations on various platform both vanilla and with geospatial R packages.
  • altRnative: An R package to run you R code in different R implementations and platforms on a docker container.