I was intrigued when invited to write a review of the statistical program S-PLUS 8 from Insightful Corporation. I had used S-PLUS 5 and 6 in the late 90s and early 2000s - liking the product a lot - but shifted to S-PLUS's close open source kin R about four years ago. My feelings for R and its community are well documented, so I wasn't sure how receptive I'd be to returning to S-PLUS after experiencing the power of a true open source product and community. I remember vividly my frustrations of several years ago attempting to migrate R code to S-PLUS, and vice versa, even as both were descendants of the same award-winning code base from the late Bell Labs.
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