The Conditional Missingness of Missing Values in R

Many data analysts often wish to examine subsets of data or otherwise manipulate data using indicators of data missingness. Luckily, R features a number of different ways of designating a value as missing. Unluckily, some of the interactions with popular functions are not always intuitive and this can produce unintended results.

I wrote a demonstration of this awhile back. The below showcases behaviors of missing values many R programmers likely expect and also some surprising results. One way to potentially avoid disastrous consequences - as a consequence of these behaviors or other causes - is to establish tests to make sure your code does what you want it to do.

Brett J. Gall
PhD Candidate