Interactive Data Science with R in Apache Zeppelin Notebook

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Introduction

The objective of this blog post is to help you get started with Apache Zeppelin notebook for your R data science requirements. Zeppelin is a web-based notebook that enables interactive data analytics. You can make beautiful data-driven, interactive and collaborative documents with Scala(with Apache Spark), Python(with Apache Spark), SparkSQL, Hive, Markdown, Shell and more.

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However, the latest official release, version 0.5.0, does not yet support the R programming language. Fortunately NFLabs, the company driving this open source project, pointed me to this pull request that provides an R Interpreter. An Interpreter is a plug-in which enables zeppelin users to use a specific language/data-processing-backend. For example to use scala code in Zeppelin, you need a spark interpreter. So, if you are impatient like I am for R-integration into Zeppelin, this tutorial will show you how to setup Zeppelin for use with R by building from source.