[R] diff-ing .rds files

Will Hopper wjhopper510 at gmail.com
Mon Nov 23 18:36:21 CET 2015

Hi all,

I'm posting to see if anyone knows of any existing resources that
auto-magically converts r objects in saved in .rds files to a plain text
representation, suitable for diffing?

I often save the results of long running calculation as .rds files, and
since I use git for source control, it would be nice if there were a way to
convert rds files to a plain text representation for diffing, so I could
avoid having large commits full of binary data. Git allows you specify a
programs for binary --> text conversion for any file type, effectively
teaching git how to diff binary files. If there was something out there
developed to do this with .rds files, it would really like to know about it!

I realize I could save the rds file with ascii=TRUE and compress=FALSE, but
that kind of defeats the point of saving as .rds in the first place.

If there is no tool out that there anyone knows of, I don't think it would
be too hard for me to write something with bash + Rscript to get the job
done, but I'd like to avoid re-inventing the wheel if possible.

Thanks for the help!

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