Introducing the paleofire package

The new R package, paleofire, has been released on CRAN. The package is dedicated to the analysis and synthesis of charcoal series contained in the Global Charcoal Database (GCD) to reconstruct past biomass burning.

paleofire is an initiative of the Global Paleofire Working Group core team, whose aim is to encourage the use of sedimentary charcoal series to develop regional to global synthesis of paleofire activity, and to ease access to the GCD data through a common research framework that will be useful to the paleofire research community. Currently, paleofire features are organized into three different parts related to (i) site selection and charcoal series extraction from GCD data; (ii) charcoal data transformation and homogenization; and (iii) charcoal series compositing and syntheses.

Installation:

paleofire is available from both CRAN website and GitHub

To install the official release (v1.0, 01/2014) from CRAN you just need to type this line at the R prompt:

 install.packages("paleofire")

To install the development version of paleofire from the GitHub repository the devtools package is required: on Windows platform the Rtools.exe program is required in order to install the devtools package. Rtools.exe can be downloaded for a specific R version on http://cran.r-project.org/bin/windows/Rtools/

Once devtools is installed type the following lines at R prompt to install paleofire:

library(devtools) 
install_github("paleofire","paleofire") 
library(paleofire)

To test everything is working you can plot a map of all charcoal records included in the Global Charcoal Database v03:

plot(pfSiteSel()) 

For details and examples about paleofire please refer to the included manual.

More examples of the capabilities of paleofire to come in the near future…

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