[R] Citing R in journal articles (or the failure to)

Michael Friendly friendly at yorku.ca
Wed Nov 12 15:17:53 CET 2008

Achim Zeileis wrote:
  ... [ snip ] ...
> R> citation("tweedie")
> To cite package 'tweedie' in publications use:
>   Peter K Dunn (2007). tweedie: Tweedie exponential family models. R
>   package version 1.5.2.
> A BibTeX entry for LaTeX users is
>   @Manual{,
>     title = {tweedie: Tweedie exponential family models},
>     author = {Peter K Dunn},
>     year = {2007},
>     note = {R package version 1.5.2},
>   }
> ATTENTION: This citation information has been auto-generated from the
> package DESCRIPTION file and may need manual editing, see
> 'help("citation")' .
> One could complement that by a
>   url = {http://CRAN.R-project.org/package=tweedie}
> This could for example be done in a CITATION file (as suggested in my 
> previous mail) which would also remove the "ATTENTION" message at the 
> end of the citation() output.

In two recent in press articles where I cited R packages,
I was asked by the copy-editor to add a location or url to the 
references.  Could I suggest that citation() be modified to include
the URL automatically?

In the function, this would entail replacing the line

   z$url <- meta$URL

with something like

   z$url <- if (is.null(meta$URL) 
paste("http://CRAN.R-project.org/package=", package, sep="") else meta$URL

I say "something like" because I'm not sure how to handle other 

Along similar lines, someone recently posted a script to generate
a .bib file for all packages installed.  It would be useful if someone
were to implement that script for CRAN and make the resulting
R-packages.bib file available on the CRAN site.


Michael Friendly     Email: friendly AT yorku DOT ca
Professor, Psychology Dept.
York University      Voice: 416 736-5115 x66249 Fax: 416 736-5814
4700 Keele Street    http://www.math.yorku.ca/SCS/friendly.html
Toronto, ONT  M3J 1P3 CANADA

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