Common Issues


What packages are part of the Tidyverse?

If you need to check what packages are part of the tidyverse, you can do so at this link.


Why are my changes not taking effect? It’s making my results look weird!

Forgetting to assign your data to an object

Often we are just printing our data and not either reassigning an existing object or creating a new object.

Here we are creating a new object from an existing one:

new_rivers <- sample(rivers, 5)
new_rivers
## [1] 315 350 332 210 350

Using just this will only print the result and not actually change new_rivers:

new_rivers + 1
## [1] 316 351 333 211 351

If we want to modify new_rivers and save that modified version, then we need to reassign new_rivers like so:

new_rivers <- new_rivers + 1
new_rivers
## [1] 316 351 333 211 351

If we forget to reassign this can cause subsequent steps to not work as expected because we will not be working with the data that has been modified.


Why do I have a + sign instead of the cursor > in the console?

Trouble with parentheses

You may get a + sign instead of the cursor > in the console suggesting that you have not closed an open parentheses. Each instance of ( should be followed by ).

Hit the “esc” key to restore your >, then fix/rerun your code.


When should I use quotes (““) or backticks (``)?

Check out our Guide on when to use quotes or backticks.


How do I know when to use the pull() function, instead of just using select()?

Check out our Guide on what functions require pulling values out first.




Common Errors


Error in x : could not find function “y”

Forgetting to load a library or misspelling a function or package

For example, we forgot library(tidyverse) below:

iris %>% pull(Species) 
## Error in iris %>% pull(Species): could not find function "%>%"

Below will not work because str_detect is missing a t at the end:

library(tidyverse) # need this! This can be at the top of your file
iris %>% pull(Species) %>% str_detec("setosa")
## Error in str_detec(., "setosa"): could not find function "str_detec"

This will not work because library() is misspelled:

libary(tidyverse)
## Error in libary(tidyverse): could not find function "libary"

Error: object ‘X’ not found

Forgetting to assign an object to start with

This error is usually caused by forgetting to assign an object to start with, or not running the piece of code that assigns an object. If you never created rivers2 and try to modify it like so:

rivers2 + 1
## Error in eval(expr, envir, enclos): object 'rivers2' not found

Make sure you run something like this, with the <- operator:

rivers2 <- new_rivers + 1
rivers2
## [1] 317 352 334 212 352

Error: unexpected ‘,’ in … / Error: unexpected ‘)’ in … / Error: unexpected ‘X’ in …

Trouble with parentheses

This error can be caused by missing parentheses. Such as:

library(dplyr)
all.equal((rivers+1, rivers)
## Error: <text>:2:20: unexpected ','
## 1: library(dplyr)
## 2: all.equal((rivers+1,
##                       ^

It should be:

all.equal((rivers+1), rivers)
## [1] "Mean relative difference: 0.001688663"

You will also often get this error if you have the correct number of parentheses but wrong placement:

all.equal((rivers+1, rivers))
## Error: <text>:1:20: unexpected ','
## 1: all.equal((rivers+1,
##                        ^

If you have too many parentheses like this (the last one is extra)… you will get this error:

all_equal((rivers+1), rivers))
## Error: <text>:1:30: unexpected ')'
## 1: all_equal((rivers+1), rivers))
##                                  ^

Error: unexpected symbol in “x”

Not using quotes or backticks when needed

You will need to use quotes for variable names that have spaces or unusual punctuation. It is best to avoid these and rename variables if a variable name has spaces.

df_quotes
## # A tibble: 3 × 2
##   `The Values` names
##          <dbl> <chr>
## 1            1 A    
## 2            2 B    
## 3            3 C

If we want to specifically pull out the column with the variable named The Values we need to use quotes or back ticks.

df_quotes %>% pull(names) # this works fine! no spaces in `names`
## [1] "A" "B" "C"
df_quotes %>% pull("The Values") # this works
## [1] 1 2 3
df_quotes %>% pull(`The Values`) # this works
## [1] 1 2 3
df_quotes %>% pull(The Values) # this does not work!
## Error: <text>:1:24: unexpected symbol
## 1: df_quotes %>% pull(The Values
##                            ^

Error: unexpected input in “x”

Copy+pasting quotation marks

If you copy paste code form somewhere with curly quotation marks, it will not work.

df_quotes %>% pull("The Values") # this works
## [1] 1 2 3
df_quotes %>% pull(“The Values”) # this doesn't work
## Error: <text>:1:20: unexpected input
## 1: df_quotes %>% pull(“
##                        ^

Error: mapping must be created by aes() / Did you use ‘%>%’ or ‘|>’ instead of ‘+’?

Forgetting to use + to add ggplot2 layers

This will not work:

ggplot(data = iris, aes(x = Species, y = Petal.Length)) %>%
  geom_boxplot()
## Error in `geom_boxplot()`:
## ! `mapping` must be created by `aes()`.
## ℹ Did you use `%>%` or `|>` instead of `+`?

This will work:

ggplot(data = iris, aes(x = Species, y = Petal.Length)) +
  geom_boxplot()


Error in +.gg: Did you accidentally put ‘+’ on a new line?

This will not work:

ggplot(data = iris, aes(x = Species, y = Petal.Length))

 +  geom_boxplot()
## Error:
## ! Cannot use `+` with a single argument.
## ℹ Did you accidentally put `+` on a new line?

This will work:

ggplot(data = iris, aes(x = Species, y = Petal.Length)) +
  geom_boxplot()

Preference Changes


How do I get output to stop printing inside the Rmarkdown and only show it in the console? (How Ava has her setup?)

To change this, you will need to adjust the RStudio Settings.

Click the gear icon beside the knit button to expand the options menu. Select “Chunk Output in Console”.
Click the gear icon beside the knit button to expand the options menu. Select “Chunk Output in Console”.
You can select Remove Output. You should now see output in the console.
You can select Remove Output. You should now see output in the console.




How do I change the color / theme?

Go to the menu Tools > Global Options > Appearance. Choose a theme and apply!