Apply dimnames (PR#385)

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Subject: Apply dimnames (PR#385)
J.C.Rougier@durham.ac.uk
Date: Wed 22 Dec 1999 - 21:22:35 EST


Message-Id: <199912221122.MAA08010@pubhealth.ku.dk>

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While fiddling with apply I noticed that there appears to be an error in
the dimnames, which actually show in the example.

     x <- cbind(x1 = 3, x2 = c(4:1, 2:5))
     dimnames(x)[[1]] <- letters[1:8]

First:

     apply(x, 2, sort)

I don't think the row names should not be retained here as they are not
common to all columns.

Second:

     cave <- function(x, c1,c2) c(mean(x[c1]),mean(x[c2]))
     apply(x,1, cave, c1="x1", c2=c("x1","x2"))

I don't think the row names should be c("x1", "x2") which are left over
from the object x, but should be determined by the function cave, even to
the extent of not being present at all (the fact that cave returns a
vector of length 2 is just a coincidence).

I've attached a new apply (Apply) which takes care of these two problems,
at the cost of an extra lapply, anticipating an internal lapply shortly to
speed everything up. Basically if FUN returns a vector and that vector
has common names across the columns (or, more generally, across MARGIN)
then these names are used to label the first extent; otherwise no names
are used.

Cheers, Jonathan.

Jonathan Rougier Science Laboratories
Department of Mathematical Sciences South Road
University of Durham Durham DH1 3LE

"[B]egin upon the precept ... that the things we see are to be
 weighed in the scale with what we know" (Meredith, 1879, The Egoist)

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