R issue “object not found”

Here’s my guess at what might work the way you wanted:

elbow <- function(arg1,arg2) {
   my_data <- read.csv("data.csv", header=TRUE, sep=",") 
   average_A <- my_data[[arg1]] + my_data[[arg2]]   # "[[" evaluates args
 elbow('A3','A5')  # entered a character literals

You should realize that the rest of my_data will have evaporated and be garbage collected after return from the elbow call. I could have showed you how to use your original expression following attach(), which would have been arguably safe within that function, but that would have violated my religious principles.

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