[R] Proposal for New R List: Criticism? Comments?

Prof Brian Ripley ripley at stats.ox.ac.uk
Fri Sep 10 12:26:27 CEST 2004

On Fri, 10 Sep 2004, Jonathan Baron wrote:

> On 09/10/04 03:54, Adaikalavan Ramasamy wrote:
> >There is another issue to be considered. Currently you need to have the
> >relevant packages installed before help.search() bring it up. My work
> >around this is to install all available packages just in case the
> >function I need is nestled in some non-standard packages. I also update
> >them rather frequently.
> I do this too, at my search site (where "frequently"=monthly) and
> you can search functions only, and use Boolean search expressions
> and phrases.
> But right now the entire set of packages takes about 885 meg (if
> I'm reading du correctly), which is less than my very modest
> collection of digital photos, and a tiny fraction of a 3-year-old
> standard hard disk.  In other words, it is no big deal to install
> all the packages if you have your own computer.

I am seeing about 520Mb for all base + CRAN packages under 1.9.1, and it 
will be rather less under 2.0.0 as more parts are stored compressed.
BioC is a lot larger.

It is however, a BIG deal to install *all* the packages and am I currently 
10 short since they depend on other software that I do not have a licence 
for or will not compile (and there are three others I cannot reinstall 
using current gcc).  On AMD64 and Solaris there are several others, and
something like 20 do not install on Windows.  (I could use --install-fake 
as the CRAN checks do, but I have the almost complete set installed to 
test R changes, not test packages.)

So I do see some merit in having a full-text search for R help available
at some URL, as Jonathan has kindly provided.

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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