How to Use runif Function in R (4 Examples)


You can use the runif() function to generate random values from a uniform distribution in R.

This function uses the following syntax:

runif(n, min=0, max=1)

where:

  • n: The number of random values to generate
  • min: The minimum value of the distribution (default is 0)
  • max: The maximum value of the distribution (default is 1)

The following examples show how to use the runif() function in different scenarios.

Example 1: Use runif() to Generate Random Values

The following code shows how to use the runif() function to generate 10 random values from a uniform distribution that ranges from 50 to 100:

#make this example reproducible
set.seed(5)

#generate 10 random values from uniform distribution
runif(n=10, min=50, max=100)

[1] 60.01072 84.26093 95.84379 64.21997 55.23251 85.05287 76.39800 90.39676
[9] 97.82501 55.52265

Note that each of the 10 random values generated is between 50 and 100.

Example 2: Use runif() to Generate Random Values Rounded to Decimal Place

The following code shows how to use the round() function with the runif() function to generate 10 random values from a uniform distribution that ranges from 50 to 100, in which each value is rounded to one decimal place:

#make this example reproducible
set.seed(5)

#generate 10 random values from uniform distribution rounded to one decimal place
round(runif(n=10, min=50, max=100), 1)

[1] 63.7 74.5 65.9 78.0 63.1 60.1 69.4 94.4 77.7 92.1

Note that each of the 10 random values generated is between 50 and 100 and is rounded to one decimal place.

Example 3: Use runif() to Generate Random Values Rounded to Whole Numbers

The following code shows how to use the round() function with the runif() function to generate 10 random values from a uniform distribution that ranges from 50 to 100, in which each value is rounded to a whole number:

#make this example reproducible
set.seed(5)

#generate 10 random values from uniform distribution rounded to whole number
round(runif(n=10, min=50, max=100), 0)

[1] 64 75 66 78 63 60 69 94 78 92

Note that each of the 10 random values generated is between 50 and 100 and is rounded to a whole number.

Example 4: Use runif() to Create Histogram of Uniform Distribution

The following code shows how to use the runif() function to generate 1,000 random values from a uniform distribution that ranges from 50 to 100, and then use the hist() function to create a histogram that visualizes this distribution of values.

#make this example reproducible
set.seed(5)

#generate 1,000 random values from uniform distribution
values <- runif(n=1000, min=50, max=100)

#generate histogram to visualize these values
hist(values)

runif histogram in R

The result is a histogram that displays the distribution of the 1,000 values generated from the uniform distribution.

Additional Resources

The following tutorials explain how to perform other common tasks in R:

How to Plot a Uniform Distribution in R
How to Select Random Samples in R

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