[Rd] [R] Semantics of sequences in R

Berwin A Turlach berwin at maths.uwa.edu.au
Tue Feb 24 10:52:15 CET 2009

On Tue, 24 Feb 2009 09:39:51 +0100
Wacek Kusnierczyk <Waclaw.Marcin.Kusnierczyk at idi.ntnu.no> wrote:

> Berwin A Turlach wrote:

> why not read some fortunes?
I am well aware of those fortunes and maybe you missed the one:

> fortune("Watson")

Getting flamed for asking dumb questions on a public mailing list is
all part of growing up and being a man/woman.
   -- Michael Watson (in a discussion on whether answers on R-help
      should be more polite)
      R-help (December 2004)

I am actually wondering where the corresponding fortunes from December
2005, December 2006, December 2007 and December 2009 are since they
started of be produced on an annual basis.

> >> on the other hand, i have seen quite a few responses that were
> >> bashing a user for reporting a non-existent bug or submitting an
> >> annoying patch.
> >>     
> >
> > In didactic terms those are "negative motivations/reinforcements";
> > opinion differ on how effective they are to reach certain learning
> > outcomes.   
> >   
> ah, so what's the difference between the way i pinpoint design flaws
> and the way r gurus respond to people, so that i am running with a
> chip on my shoulder, and they are being 'negatively
> motivating/reinforcing' in didactic terms?  [...]

Your goal is, presumably, that you want to have the design flaws
fixed/discussed/&c.  The goal of the R gurus is to avoid having to
waste their time on unproductive issues because people do not read
documentation/behave contrary to how they are asked to behave/&c.

To reach your goal, the controversial approach is counter productive.
To reach their goal, the controversial approach can be quite effective.

> >> it has been fixed immediately by martin. 
> >>     
> >
> > Yes, and, again, you could not help yourself telling the developers
> > what you think they should do, could you?  
> was this really running with a chip:

Look up what "running with a chip on your shoulder means" and reflect
on the occasions in which I suggested to you that you give the
impression of doing so.   On this occasion nobody said that you were
running around with a chip on your shoulder.

> "shouldn't the tests have captured it? i think you should have a check
> for every feature following from the docs."
> to which marting responded "yes, we should"

But he also made it clear that it would be unlikely that he or any
other R-core member would write those tests and that this would
probably be left to you; with any contribution being welcome.  Consider
yourself lucky that this exchange was with Martin, other members of R
core might have communicated a similar message in quite another way.
That exchange is very much confirming my understanding of the culture
of the R community.

> > As I try to tell you, that
> > is not the way it works.  R comes already with extensive tests that
> > are run with "make check".  If you think some are missing, you
> > could send a script and propose that they are included.  But
> > telling others that they should write such tests is unlikely to
> > make it happen. 
> haven't done the thing.

Come on, read your own quote above:  "Shouldn't the tests have captured
this?  I think you should have a check for every feature following from
the docs",  If this is not "telling others that they should write such
test", then what is?  



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