R-alpha: Can we "require" 1) GNU make, 2) Perl -- for help "compiling"?

Martin Maechler Martin Maechler <maechler@stat.math.ethz.ch>
Mon, 25 Aug 1997 17:15:32 +0200

Another request for comments

	(the last one on file extensions had not too many 'voters' ...)

Both questions have to do with improving the 'man' file format,
conventions, .. AND building the  'help', 'latex' and 'html' files from the
man sources. 

Before you read on.. 
Kurt Hornik has suggested that in any case, the compiled
'help', 'html' (and 'tex' and 'R' Example) files could be provided  
(through CRAN) for those people who would lack in the following..

1) I am trying to `replace' the current scheme of
	make install-help
	make install-latex
	make install-html
	make test-Examples	which just calls  shell script in RHOME/etc

   by a scheme that uses proper dependencies and only
   rebuilds things when and where they have changed.

   Currently, I believe that this would be much easier / nicer  if I could
   require  GNU make  (which all Linuxers have anyway) for doing these.
   I could then use things such as  $(shell: ...)   $(wildcard: ...), etc.

 Is this ok with all of you?

2) Even more extreme: Can we require  __Perl__ to be available for most
   (for all who want to build  help/html/tex files themselves)?

   If yes, we could think of enhancing the "compilation" of man files
   quite a bit, using perl instead of the
	sed .. | m4 | sed ..
   pipe which we currently need.

What do you think?

-- Martin
r-devel mailing list -- Read http://www.ci.tuwien.ac.at/~hornik/R/R-FAQ.html
Send "info", "help", or "[un]subscribe"
(in the "body", not the subject !)  To: r-devel-request@stat.math.ethz.ch