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The nonprofit Linux Foundation today announced a new initiative called the R Consortium, a new group to unite the users of the open-source R programming language, which is widely used among data scientists and statisticians.

Microsoft, Oracle, HP, Tibco, Rstudio, and Alteryx, among others, are all sponsoring the new industry consortium. The R Foundation, a separate nonprofit dedicated to maintaining R, is a founding organization for the new consortium, which will in turn provide support to the R Foundation.

The deal comes five months after Microsoft acquired Revolution Analytics, a prominent R distribution seller and support provider. (Revolution Analytics chief community officer David Smith has a blog post on the new consortium here.) Meanwhile, participating companies also have various types of commercial products based on R.

R users already come together in local groups, such as the Bay Area R Users Group. But the new R Consortium provides an infrastructure steering committee to handle technical decisions and supervise working groups.

“This is a great opportunity to harness the power of the thriving R user community around the globe and advance the R language for everyone,” John Chambers, a core member of the R project and a member of the R Foundation, said in a statement.

The R Consortium is just the latest industry consortium for the Linux Foundation to handle. Other recent projects include the Open Container Project and the Node.js Foundation.


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