[Rd] Re: R-devel and not R-help (was 'using "= matrix (...)" in .C calls')

Tony Plate tplate at blackmesacapital.com
Fri Jun 18 17:24:19 CEST 2004

Here are three suggested additions to the posting guide:  (the last two 
have been on my queue based on public and private suggestions of frequent 
contributors to R-help and R-devel)

[after the heading "Basic statistics and classroom homework"]

<p><b>Which list: R-help or R-devel?</b>There are two widely
used mailing list for questions and discussion about R.
R-devel is intended for questions and discussion about code
development in R.  Informed questions involving R
code, and most questions involving C, C++, etc code should
go to R-devel.  R-help is for more general questions.

[under "Do your homework"]

<li>If something seems to have changed in R, look in the
latest <a
href="http://cran.r-project.org/src/base/NEWS">NEWS</a> file
on CRAN for information about it.

[under "Technical details of posting"]

   <li>If you can't send from an email address that simply
accepts replies, then say so in your posting so that people
are not inconvenienced when they try to respond to your message


-- Tony Plate

At Friday 02:17 AM 6/18/2004, Martin Maechler wrote:
> >>>>> "PD" == Peter Dalgaard <p.dalgaard at biostat.ku.dk>
> >>>>>     on 17 Jun 2004 18:50:25 +0200 writes:
>     PD> Tony Plate <tplate at blackmesacapital.com> writes:
>     >> Also, this type of basic question is more appropriate for
>     >> R-help, not R-devel.
>     PD> Hmm. No.
>     PD> (1) This list is for developers, and they can be beginners too. On
>     PD> r-help we cannot even assume that people know that C is a
>     PD> programming language.
>yes, yes, yes!
>In general, I believe people should shift more topics from
>R-help to R-devel, rather than the other way around.  Indeed,
>lately we have been seeing too many things on R-help that should
>have gone to R-devel instead.
>A very good example being the thread started by Vadim Ogranovich
>with subject "mkChar can be interrupted" (on Mon, 14 Jun 2004).
>That has been utterly non-intelligible for probably more than
>90% of the readers of R-help, and it may even have been the reason of
>several "unsubscribe"rs (from R-help) that I as list maintainer
>had seen happening +- subsequently.
>I'd say, informed questions should go to R-devel in many cases
>where .C() is involved and certainly in all cases where .Call()
>is used.  Even though we (R core) would like to promote the use
>of .Call() as much as possible, for most R users, programming in
>C (or C++, Java, Fortran) is a big step, and learning to use
>SEXP's is a much bigger step most (unfortunately) never take.
>BTW: I'm glad for well formulated suggestions along the lines
>      above to be added to http://www.r-project.org/mail.html
>      and/or the posting guide
>Martin Maechler

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