With the proliferation of sensors and the ease of data collection from online sources, large datasets have become the norm in many scientific disciplines, and efficient data storage, management, and retrival is imperative for large research projects. Relational databases provide a solution, but in order to be useful, must be able to be linked to analysis and visualization tools, such as R. Here, we present a package intended to facilitate integration of R with the open-source database software PostgreSQL, with a focus on its spatial extension, PostGIS. The package rpostgis (version 1.4.1) provides methods for spatial data handling (vector and raster) between PostGIS-enabled databases and R, methods for R ‘ data.frame ’s storage in PostgreSQL, and a set of convenient wrappers for common database procedures. We thus expect rpostgis to be useful for both (1) existing users of spatial data in R and/or PostGIS, and (2) R users who have yet to adopt relational databases for their projects.
Reference: Bucklin D. & Basille M. (in press) rpostgis: Linking R with a PostGIS Spatial Database. The R Journal.