On 23 January, Microsoft announced acquisition of a major vendor of advanced R tools, Revolution Analytics.
Here’s a link to the first batch of web items and discussion summarized on the R-bloggers site, 26 January 2015.
As an InfoWorld article says (Can Microsoft Make R easy?):
“The R programming language is a key tool for data scientists. It is not, however, easy to learn or use. While some suggest that R and data science in general is inherently complex, there's clearly opportunity for it to be democratized, at least to the point that business analysts can take advantage of it -- which is critical, given how important data has become to running an enterprise effectively.”
The R ecology of tools continues to evolve rapidly and if Microsoft can make it easier to harness the power of R, that will be a good thing.
While Microsoft figures out what it will do, my advice to myself and colleagues is to continue to build and use our R skills. There are lots of problems to investigate with the tools we’ve already got and the new ones in development by the folks at RStudio and other places.