[Rd] The Depends: field of a package is now used by library()

Prof Brian Ripley ripley at stats.ox.ac.uk
Thu Aug 12 17:19:12 CEST 2004

On Thu, 12 Aug 2004, Deepayan Sarkar wrote:

> On Thursday 12 August 2004 07:34, Prof Brian Ripley wrote:
> > In R-devel, the Depends: field in the DESCRIPTION file is now used by
> > library() to load the named packages before the current package, and
> > also to set up the environment to save images and prepare for lazy
> > loading.
> How would this relate to namespaces? For instance, lattice imports grid 
> (and a few things from stats and graphics). If I keep grid in the 
> depends field, loading lattice does a require(grid), which defeats one 
> of the purposes of having namespaces. If I leave it out, nothing bad 
> seems to happen as long as grid is installed, but there should be some 
> indication in the DESCRIPTION that that grid is a requirement. None of 
> the other fields seem appropriate.

It's a grey area.  As all copies of R that you are using will have grid, 
leave it out of Depends: for lattice.

Perhaps we need to invent another field such as UsesNamespaces?


Brian D. Ripley,                  ripley at stats.ox.ac.uk
Professor of Applied Statistics,  http://www.stats.ox.ac.uk/~ripley/
University of Oxford,             Tel:  +44 1865 272861 (self)
1 South Parks Road,                     +44 1865 272866 (PA)
Oxford OX1 3TG, UK                Fax:  +44 1865 272595

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