[Rd] R-Google interface: Google summer of code

From: Farrel Buchinsky <fjbuch_at_gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 27 Feb 2009 09:02:51 -0500


I use R for data management and ongoing data analysis for amongst other things, a multi-center medical research project. I have found Google spreadsheets to be a fantastic way for all collaborators to be on the same page. Furthermore, Google Forms allows one to capture data from respondents and effortlessly write it to a google spreadsheet. Currently, one has to manually download the spreadsheet as a csv file and then read that into R. Since data changes frequently and is almost never final it would be far preferable for R to read a google spreadsheet directly. RODBC package does something similar for Microsoft Access and Microsoft Excel.

I am a surgeon-scientist whose programing experience is extremely limited. Is there a willing mentor who would want to take such a project and propose it for the Google summer of code project?

The mentor could chose his or her scope. For instance at it's most basic the project's goal could be to simply read a spreadsheet from google spreadsheet into a R dataframe. The scope could widen to allow R to also write to Google spreadsheet. If one wanted something even more challenging then one could create code that allows one to post R script to a R server allowing the server to read Google Spreadsheets, processes the data and present the output to a web client.

Farrel Buchinsky

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