encodeString in R: How to Encode Character as Printing in R

In R, character vectors have two pieces of data:

  1. A sequence of bytes.
  2. An encoding in which those bytes should be interpreted.

To encode a specific string in R, use the Encoding() function. This Encoding() function is different from encodeString(). Let’s see what is encodeString() and how we can use it.

encodeString in R

To encode the character vector as for printing in R, use the encodeString() method. The encodeString() function escapes the strings in a character vector in the same way print.default does, and optionally fits the encoded strings within a field width.


encodeString(x, width = 0, quote = "", na.encode = TRUE,
             justify = c("left", "right", "centre", "none"))


x: It is a character vector or an object coerced to one by as.character.

width: It is an integer: the minimum field width. If NULL or NA, this is the largest field width needed for any element of x.

quote: It is a character: quoting character if any.

na.encode: It is a logical argument: should NA strings be encoded?

justify: It is a character: partial matches are allowed. If padding to the minimum field width is needed, how should spaces be inserted? justify == “none” is equivalent to width = 0, for consistency with format.default.

Return Value

It returns a character vector of the same length as x, with the same attributes but with no class set.


x <- "ps5\nnvidia\nrestock"

cat("interprets escapes", "\n")
cat(x, "\n")

cat("After using encodeString", "\n")
cat(encodeString(x), "\n", sep = "_")


[1] "ps5\nnvidia\nrestock"
interprets escapes
After using encodeString

There are some characters that are non-printable. For example, escapes backslash and the control characters \a (bell), \b (backspace), \f (formfeed), \n (line feed), \r (carriage return), \t (tab) and \v (vertical tab) as well as any non-printable characters in a single-byte locale.

Applying encodeString() on Vector in R

To apply the encodeString() function to a vector, see the following code.

rv <- c("outriders", "returnal", "rangnarok")
encodeString(rv, 2)
encodeString(rv, width = NA)
encodeString(rv, width = NA, justify = "c")
encodeString(rv, width = NA, justify = "r")
encodeString(rv, width = NA, quote = "'", justify = "r")


[1] "outriders" "returnal" "rangnarok"
[1] "outriders" "returnal" "rangnarok"
[1] "outriders" "returnal " "rangnarok"
[1] "outriders" "returnal " "rangnarok"
[1] "outriders" " returnal" "rangnarok"
[1] "'outriders'" " 'returnal'" "'rangnarok'"

That is it for encodeString in R

See also

strtoi in R

Convert float to string

Length of String

toString in R

chartr() in R

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