Prof Brian Ripley ripley at stats.ox.ac.uk
Wed Nov 17 00:02:22 CET 2010

On Tue, 16 Nov 2010, Douglas Bates wrote:

> On Tue, Nov 16, 2010 at 2:35 PM, Prof. John C Nash <nashjc at uottawa.ca> wrote:
>> I normally see digest once per day, but got msg from Doug Bates so responding with context.
>> UCMINF is a package on CRAN that implements a variable metric minimizer.
> A pedant might point out that the package is called "ucminf".

And the documentation for the function is under 'dblepr' in 'Writing R 
Extensions'.  There are quite a lot of uses in packages, including 
cluster, mda and tweedie.

The original message mentioned Windows.  You absolutely must avoid 
Fortran I/O on Windows: even having unused calls in your code can
cause crashes, since initializing Fortran I/O interferes with C I/O 
(the benign end of the spectrum is to reset buffers and switch line 
endings to LF from CRLF, but segfaults are not uncommon).

>> It does quite
>> well on unconstrained problems. Stig Mortensen packaged the Fortran version for R, but is
>> not at moment responding to emails. There's also a Matlab version. We have it in optimx
>> and get some occasions where it just stops if we set trace>0. Other times we can't get it
>> to fail. My guess is something like an undefined variable or a bad declaration of a
>> pointer, but C and C++ are not languages I've much experience with.
> Well, it doesn't work well for me because my version of gfortran (GNU
> Fortran (Ubuntu/Linaro 4.4.4-14ubuntu5) 4.4.5) objects to the format
> strings in some of the Fortran WRITE statements.
> The recommended approach is to avoid all Fortran I/O including writing
> to a Fortran character array.   As there are only 3 such WRITE
> statements in the Fortran code it would be very simple to replace them
> with calls to C functions that in turn call Rprintf.  However, it
> would be best if Stig could take ownership of the modifications.
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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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