Wikis etc.

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Wikis etc.

Frank Harrell
I feel that as long as people continue to provide help on r-help wikis
will not be successful.  I think we need to move to a central wiki or
discussion board and to move away from e-mail.  People are extremely
helpful but e-mail seems to be to always be memory-less and messages get
too long without factorization of old text.  R-help is now too active
and too many new users are asking questions asked dozens of times for
e-mail to be effective.

The wiki also needs to collect and organize example code, especially for
data manipulation.  I think that new users would profit immensely from a
compendium of examples.

Just my .02 Euros

Frank
--
Frank E Harrell Jr   Professor and Chair           School of Medicine
                      Department of Biostatistics   Vanderbilt University

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Frank Harrell
Department of Biostatistics, Vanderbilt University
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Re: Wikis etc.

Kevin E. Thorpe
Frank makes an intersting point.  For those interested, A site I spend
quite a bit of time on for Linux related stuff is IMHO really well done.
There are fora for many different linux distrubtions.  There is a wiki,
a collection of tutorials, etc.  If you want to take a look, the url is
http://www.linuxquestions.org/

Kevin

Frank E Harrell Jr wrote:

> I feel that as long as people continue to provide help on r-help wikis
> will not be successful.  I think we need to move to a central wiki or
> discussion board and to move away from e-mail.  People are extremely
> helpful but e-mail seems to be to always be memory-less and messages get
> too long without factorization of old text.  R-help is now too active
> and too many new users are asking questions asked dozens of times for
> e-mail to be effective.
>
> The wiki also needs to collect and organize example code, especially for
> data manipulation.  I think that new users would profit immensely from a
> compendium of examples.
>
> Just my .02 Euros
>
> Frank


--
Kevin E. Thorpe
Biostatistician/Trialist, Knowledge Translation Program
Assistant Professor, Department of Public Health Sciences
Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto
email: [hidden email]  Tel: 416.946.8081  Fax: 416.946.3297

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Re: Wikis etc.

John Marsland
I agree.

In desperation at my inbox being swamped by messages I contacted the R-core team
to ask about other solutions. They recommended gmane.org who compile a
web-viewable archive of thousands of email lists - it even provides RSS feeds
for new topics.

Going back to the wiki issue, it might be wise to this about using Trac
<http://projects.edgewall.com/trac/> which is an open source project that
integrates a wiki with the SVN code versioning system (used by R-project) and a
replacement for bugzilla's ticketing system. We use it to document our own code.

Trac would have the advantage of pushing questions on the R list back towards
the  actual source code and allowing all users to participate in the future
development of the software.

John Marsland

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Re: Wikis etc.

Fernando Henrique Ferraz P. da Rosa
John Marsland writes:
> Trac would have the advantage of pushing questions on the R list back towards
> the  actual source code and allowing all users to participate in the future
> development of the software.
>

        I see that this could be useful for R-devel, but considering the
volume of traffic and the kind of contents on R-help, I don't think such
tying to the actual source code would be so useful. Perhaps trac could
be used as an integrated interface for r-devel/svn and the bug track
system, and another wiki solution be used exclusiverly for the r-help
community (which includes many people not directly interested in coding
or development issues).

--
"Though this be randomness, yet there is structure in't."
                                           Rosa, F.H.F.P

Instituto de Matemática e Estatística
Universidade de São Paulo
Fernando Henrique Ferraz P. da Rosa
http://www.feferraz.net

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Re: Wikis etc.

Jonathan Baron
In reply to this post by John Marsland
On 01/06/06 13:40, John Marsland wrote:
> Going back to the wiki issue, it might be wise to this about using Trac
> <http://projects.edgewall.com/trac/> which is an open source project that
> integrates a wiki with the SVN code versioning system (used by R-project) and a
> replacement for bugzilla's ticketing system. We use it to document our own code.
>
> Trac would have the advantage of pushing questions on the R list back towards
> the  actual source code and allowing all users to participate in the future
> development of the software.

It isn't clear to me what this would be for.  I'm not sure that I
trust users to modify code.

I was thinking myself that user input might be most useful for
the documentation of functions.  Not that this is so bad, but
rather it might be possible to have an extended system of
documentation on the web, with FAQ-type questions answered as
part of the documentation itself, so that people would not have
to rely on R-help so much (even in its archived forms).

And I was thinking of setting up a Wiki with one page per
function.  (Given that there are now hundreds or thousands of
functions, setting this up would have to be automated.)  I've
just installed (for another purpose) TWiki, which seems to have
some nice features for this sort of thing (in particular, data
stored as text files, hence easily manipulated by other
programs), but I will not have time to think through how to do
this for some time.  Just another idea to throw into the hopper.

In principle, another possibility is to do something like the PHP
manual at http://www.php.net/manual/en/, which is not a wiki but
more like a bulletin board, with discussion of each command.  But
I think a wiki is better.  I found it time consuming to read
through all those comments, almost as bad as reading through
R-help postings. :)

Jon
--
Jonathan Baron, Professor of Psychology, University of Pennsylvania
Home page: http://www.sas.upenn.edu/~baron

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Re: Wikis etc.

John Marsland-2
In reply to this post by Fernando Henrique Ferraz P. da Rosa
On 1/6/06, John Marsland <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I see your point. Maybe the answer is to use the list for R-help style
> questions, but encourage people who answer questions to point the the
> answers in the wiki - which they might have enhanced if necessary.
>
> On 1/6/06, Fernando Henrique Ferraz P. da Rosa <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > John Marsland writes:
> > > Trac would have the advantage of pushing questions on the R list back towards
> > > the  actual source code and allowing all users to participate in the future
> > > development of the software.
> > >
> >
> >         I see that this could be useful for R-devel, but considering the
> > volume of traffic and the kind of contents on R-help, I don't think such
> > tying to the actual source code would be so useful. Perhaps trac could
> > be used as an integrated interface for r-devel/svn and the bug track
> > system, and another wiki solution be used exclusiverly for the r-help
> > community (which includes many people not directly interested in coding
> > or development issues).
> >
> > --
> > "Though this be randomness, yet there is structure in't."
> >                                            Rosa, F.H.F.P
> >
> > Instituto de Matemática e Estatística
> > Universidade de São Paulo
> > Fernando Henrique Ferraz P. da Rosa
> > http://www.feferraz.net
> >
> >
>

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Re: Wikis etc.

John Marsland
In reply to this post by Jonathan Baron
It isn't so much that users modify the code as they would have to do
that in the usual way by checking out the project from the SVN.

Rather that extended documentation, features and enhancements etc. can
easily locate and quote from the code base and the differencing engine
as applied to the code base between versions.

On 1/6/06, Jonathan Baron <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> It isn't clear to me what this would be for.  I'm not sure that I
> trust users to modify code.

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Re: Wikis etc.

barry rowlingson
In reply to this post by Jonathan Baron
Jonathan Baron wrote:

> And I was thinking of setting up a Wiki with one page per
> function.  (Given that there are now hundreds or thousands of
> functions, setting this up would have to be automated.)

  One page per R manual page file would probably suffice. You could do
something along the lines of the Zope book, where users can add comments
but you can browse with comments off:

http://www.zope.org/Documentation/Books/ZopeBook/2_6Edition/AdvDTML.stx

  then toggle the 'Com On' button. This is less of a wiki and more of an
annotation service.

but I think you'd run into problems with losing all the annotation when
a new R version comes out.

Barry

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Re: Wikis etc.

Duncan Murdoch
In reply to this post by Jonathan Baron
On 1/6/2006 9:15 AM, Jonathan Baron wrote:

> On 01/06/06 13:40, John Marsland wrote:
>> Going back to the wiki issue, it might be wise to this about using Trac
>> <http://projects.edgewall.com/trac/> which is an open source project that
>> integrates a wiki with the SVN code versioning system (used by R-project) and a
>> replacement for bugzilla's ticketing system. We use it to document our own code.
>>
>> Trac would have the advantage of pushing questions on the R list back towards
>> the  actual source code and allowing all users to participate in the future
>> development of the software.
>
> It isn't clear to me what this would be for.  I'm not sure that I
> trust users to modify code.
>
> I was thinking myself that user input might be most useful for
> the documentation of functions.  Not that this is so bad, but
> rather it might be possible to have an extended system of
> documentation on the web, with FAQ-type questions answered as
> part of the documentation itself, so that people would not have
> to rely on R-help so much (even in its archived forms).
>
> And I was thinking of setting up a Wiki with one page per
> function.  (Given that there are now hundreds or thousands of
> functions, setting this up would have to be automated.)  I've
> just installed (for another purpose) TWiki, which seems to have
> some nice features for this sort of thing (in particular, data
> stored as text files, hence easily manipulated by other
> programs), but I will not have time to think through how to do
> this for some time.  Just another idea to throw into the hopper.

I think this sounds like a great idea.  I would like to see two way
connections between this and the existing man pages, e.g. in the HTML or
PDF versions, links that go directly to the Wiki, and links from the
Wiki to an online copy of the man pages.

If your automatic setup permitted it, then showing the output of the
examples on the man pages would be nice.

One issue that you'll need to think about is whether there is one page
per function, or one page per .Rd file, or some other organization:  and
you'll need to be prepared for changes in the organization of the
documentation with new R releases (and changes in function names, and
changes in the examples...).

Duncan Murdoch

>
> In principle, another possibility is to do something like the PHP
> manual at http://www.php.net/manual/en/, which is not a wiki but
> more like a bulletin board, with discussion of each command.  But
> I think a wiki is better.  I found it time consuming to read
> through all those comments, almost as bad as reading through
> R-help postings. :)
>
> Jon

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Re: Wikis etc.

Seth Falcon-2
In reply to this post by barry rowlingson
Regarding systems for presenting documentation and allowing user
comments, I recently came across Commentary (see homepage
http://pythonpaste.org/commentary/).

Haven't used it, but my impression is that comments and the main doc
are both stored in svn (and auto-committed for comment changes).  This
might help solve the problem of updating the doc upon a new R release
because you could take advantage of svn merge.

Of course, svn merge won't know whether the comments are still
appropriate or not :-(

Nevermind.

+ seth

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Re: Wikis etc.

Tony Plate-3
In reply to this post by Frank Harrell
I second Frank's comment!  I wonder if questioners who receive a bunch
of useful replies could be encouraged to enter a summary of those on a
Wiki, in much the same way as users of S-news were expected to post a
summary of their answers as a way of giving something back.

An existing R Wiki is located at
http://fawn.unibw-hamburg.de/cgi-bin/Rwiki.pl?RwikiHome

However, there's currently not much on it.  Recently on R-help there was
  a summary of using databases with R, which looked very useful, so I
put that on the Wiki.  Maybe if others just start putting things there
it can gather momentum?

-- Tony Plate

Frank E Harrell Jr wrote:

> I feel that as long as people continue to provide help on r-help wikis
> will not be successful.  I think we need to move to a central wiki or
> discussion board and to move away from e-mail.  People are extremely
> helpful but e-mail seems to be to always be memory-less and messages get
> too long without factorization of old text.  R-help is now too active
> and too many new users are asking questions asked dozens of times for
> e-mail to be effective.
>
> The wiki also needs to collect and organize example code, especially for
> data manipulation.  I think that new users would profit immensely from a
> compendium of examples.
>
> Just my .02 Euros
>
> Frank

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Re: Wikis etc.

Don MacQueen
In reply to this post by Frank Harrell
I don't have any significant experience with wikis, but I have yet to
use any discussion board that was anywhere near as useful to me, or
as easy to use, as an email list.

Discussion boards have a web browser interface. Typically, they
display at most a dozen topics at a time. Scrolling to get the next
dozen is slow, as it requires a download from some web server. There
is a huge amount of wasted screen space. When there is a topic that
generates many messages scrolling through them is slow, as some
discussion board interfaces show only 6 or 7 at a time. Search
engines provided by the discussion board software are limited and
slow.

In contrast, in my email client I can show about three dozen subject
lines at a time, I can quickly scroll up and down through the list, I
can quickly group all the messages with the same subject line with a
single click of the mouse. I can easily and quickly store selected
messages of particular interest to a place where I can easily find
them again. My email software searches very quickly through a huge
number of messages.

Then there's the question of administration and maintenance. Who is
going to set up the wiki or discussion board categories? As far as I
can tell (and that's actually not very far), either of them would
require a lot more time and effort to set up and maintain than the
present email list.

Yes, r-help has a huge volume -- right now, my R-help mailbox has
almost 22,000 messages in it, 2004-01-02 to the present; its size is
about 124 mb. Yes, there is a lot of duplication. None the less, I
find it easier and quicker to scan the subject lines a few times a
day for interesting-looking topics than it would be to go to a
browser and have to navigate up and down through various categories,
looking for interesting-looking topics.

As far as I can tell, the wiki concept is more along the lines of a
reference library, whereas mailing lists and discussion boards are
meant for people to ask each other questions, and give each other
answers. If that perception is at all accurate, I would have to say
that a wiki is by no means a suitable replacement for an email list.
And when it comes to a choice between an email list and a discussion
board, I have a strong preference for the email list.

-Don

At 7:04 PM -0600 1/5/06, Frank E Harrell Jr wrote:

>I feel that as long as people continue to provide help on r-help wikis
>will not be successful.  I think we need to move to a central wiki or
>discussion board and to move away from e-mail.  People are extremely
>helpful but e-mail seems to be to always be memory-less and messages get
>too long without factorization of old text.  R-help is now too active
>and too many new users are asking questions asked dozens of times for
>e-mail to be effective.
>
>The wiki also needs to collect and organize example code, especially for
>data manipulation.  I think that new users would profit immensely from a
>compendium of examples.
>
>Just my .02 Euros
>
>Frank
>--
>Frank E Harrell Jr   Professor and Chair           School of Medicine
>                       Department of Biostatistics   Vanderbilt University
>
>______________________________________________
>[hidden email] mailing list
>https://stat.ethz.ch/mailman/listinfo/r-help
>PLEASE do read the posting guide! http://www.R-project.org/posting-guide.html


--
--------------------------------------
Don MacQueen
Environmental Protection Department
Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
Livermore, CA, USA

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Re: Wikis etc.

Xiaohua Dai
In reply to this post by Frank Harrell
I use free Gmail to receive R-help emails. It is nice since

1. You can search your email quickly.
2. Replies to the same emails would be grouped together chronologically.
3. You can set up filters to put emails to different labels according
to the key words.

Please check the detailed description at
http://mail.google.com/mail/help/why_gmail.html

On 1/6/06, Don MacQueen <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I don't have any significant experience with wikis, but I have yet to
> use any discussion board that was anywhere near as useful to me, or
> as easy to use, as an email list.
>
> Discussion boards have a web browser interface. Typically, they
> display at most a dozen topics at a time. Scrolling to get the next
> dozen is slow, as it requires a download from some web server. There
> is a huge amount of wasted screen space. When there is a topic that
> generates many messages scrolling through them is slow, as some
> discussion board interfaces show only 6 or 7 at a time. Search
> engines provided by the discussion board software are limited and
> slow.
>
> In contrast, in my email client I can show about three dozen subject
> lines at a time, I can quickly scroll up and down through the list, I
> can quickly group all the messages with the same subject line with a
> single click of the mouse. I can easily and quickly store selected
> messages of particular interest to a place where I can easily find
> them again. My email software searches very quickly through a huge
> number of messages.
>
> Then there's the question of administration and maintenance. Who is
> going to set up the wiki or discussion board categories? As far as I
> can tell (and that's actually not very far), either of them would
> require a lot more time and effort to set up and maintain than the
> present email list.
>
> Yes, r-help has a huge volume -- right now, my R-help mailbox has
> almost 22,000 messages in it, 2004-01-02 to the present; its size is
> about 124 mb. Yes, there is a lot of duplication. None the less, I
> find it easier and quicker to scan the subject lines a few times a
> day for interesting-looking topics than it would be to go to a
> browser and have to navigate up and down through various categories,
> looking for interesting-looking topics.
>
> As far as I can tell, the wiki concept is more along the lines of a
> reference library, whereas mailing lists and discussion boards are
> meant for people to ask each other questions, and give each other
> answers. If that perception is at all accurate, I would have to say
> that a wiki is by no means a suitable replacement for an email list.
> And when it comes to a choice between an email list and a discussion
> board, I have a strong preference for the email list.
>
> -Don
>
> At 7:04 PM -0600 1/5/06, Frank E Harrell Jr wrote:
> >I feel that as long as people continue to provide help on r-help wikis
> >will not be successful.  I think we need to move to a central wiki or
> >discussion board and to move away from e-mail.  People are extremely
> >helpful but e-mail seems to be to always be memory-less and messages get
> >too long without factorization of old text.  R-help is now too active
> >and too many new users are asking questions asked dozens of times for
> >e-mail to be effective.
> >
> >The wiki also needs to collect and organize example code, especially for
> >data manipulation.  I think that new users would profit immensely from a
> >compendium of examples.
> >
> >Just my .02 Euros
> >
> >Frank
> >--
> >Frank E Harrell Jr   Professor and Chair           School of Medicine
> >                       Department of Biostatistics   Vanderbilt University
> >
> >______________________________________________
> >[hidden email] mailing list
> >https://stat.ethz.ch/mailman/listinfo/r-help
> >PLEASE do read the posting guide! http://www.R-project.org/posting-guide.html
>
>
> --
> --------------------------------------
> Don MacQueen
> Environmental Protection Department
> Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
> Livermore, CA, USA
>
> ______________________________________________
> [hidden email] mailing list
> https://stat.ethz.ch/mailman/listinfo/r-help
> PLEASE do read the posting guide! http://www.R-project.org/posting-guide.html
>



--
Xiaohua Dai, Dr.

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Re: Wikis etc.

paul sorenson-5
In reply to this post by Frank Harrell
I am a fan of wiki's and I reckon it would really help with making R
more accessible.  On one extreme you have this email list and on the
other extreme you have RNews and the PDF's on CRAN.  A wiki might hit
the spot between them and reduce the traffic on the email list.


Frank E Harrell Jr wrote:

> I feel that as long as people continue to provide help on r-help wikis
> will not be successful.  I think we need to move to a central wiki or
> discussion board and to move away from e-mail.  People are extremely
> helpful but e-mail seems to be to always be memory-less and messages get
> too long without factorization of old text.  R-help is now too active
> and too many new users are asking questions asked dozens of times for
> e-mail to be effective.
>
> The wiki also needs to collect and organize example code, especially for
> data manipulation.  I think that new users would profit immensely from a
> compendium of examples.
>
> Just my .02 Euros
>
> Frank

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Re: Wikis etc.

Duncan Murdoch
On 1/6/2006 8:02 PM, paul sorenson wrote:
> I am a fan of wiki's and I reckon it would really help with making R
> more accessible.  On one extreme you have this email list and on the
> other extreme you have RNews and the PDF's on CRAN.  A wiki might hit
> the spot between them and reduce the traffic on the email list.

The difficulty is getting it going.  I haven't used Wikis, and visited
the two that have been mentioned, aiming to answer the example question
Frank posed ("ylim in barplots").  It's not addressed on either, which
is not too surprising, but then I didn't know what to do next, either as
someone who wanted the answer, or someone who wanted to provide it.

Duncan Murdoch

>
> Frank E Harrell Jr wrote:
>
>>I feel that as long as people continue to provide help on r-help wikis
>>will not be successful.  I think we need to move to a central wiki or
>>discussion board and to move away from e-mail.  People are extremely
>>helpful but e-mail seems to be to always be memory-less and messages get
>>too long without factorization of old text.  R-help is now too active
>>and too many new users are asking questions asked dozens of times for
>>e-mail to be effective.
>>
>>The wiki also needs to collect and organize example code, especially for
>>data manipulation.  I think that new users would profit immensely from a
>>compendium of examples.
>>
>>Just my .02 Euros
>>
>>Frank
>
>
> ______________________________________________
> [hidden email] mailing list
> https://stat.ethz.ch/mailman/listinfo/r-help
> PLEASE do read the posting guide! http://www.R-project.org/posting-guide.html

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Re: Wikis etc.

John Sorkin
In reply to this post by Frank Harrell
Several people have stated that one of the problems with the current Email help model is that many questions are asked over, and over again and that people do not search for past answers. Let me point out that the existence of past answers and how to find and search is not known by many people, particularly novice R users. The situation would be greatly helped if the mailing list would automatically add a header or footer to all Email messages giving the URL of the archived Email threads. Don't expect people to know that what are not told! Those people who, in their answers, suggest that people should search the archives should include the URL of the archives in their response (http://carn.us.r-project.org then click on the word SEARCH in the left-hand column ). Even if a novice would think about searching the R archives he, or she, might have difficulty finding the correct site. A naive google search of "R-archive" and "R archive" did not return the correct URL. Even if a n!
 ovice would know about the CRAN web site (CRAN is not an intuitive acronym for R), when the novice would get to the CRAN web site they would have to know to click on SEARCH. It might help if the CRAN web site contained a link titled SEARCH R ARCHIVES.
John


John Sorkin M.D., Ph.D.
Chief, Biostatistics and Informatics
Baltimore VA Medical Center GRECC and
University of Maryland School of Medicine Claude Pepper OAIC

University of Maryland School of Medicine
Division of Gerontology
Baltimore VA Medical Center
10 North Greene Street
GRECC (BT/18/GR)
Baltimore, MD 21201-1524

410-605-7119
- NOTE NEW EMAIL ADDRESS:
[hidden email]

>>> Duncan Murdoch <[hidden email]> 01/07/06 10:15 AM >>>
On 1/6/2006 8:02 PM, paul sorenson wrote:
> I am a fan of wiki's and I reckon it would really help with making R
> more accessible.  On one extreme you have this email list and on the
> other extreme you have RNews and the PDF's on CRAN.  A wiki might hit
> the spot between them and reduce the traffic on the email list.

The difficulty is getting it going.  I haven't used Wikis, and visited
the two that have been mentioned, aiming to answer the example question
Frank posed ("ylim in barplots").  It's not addressed on either, which
is not too surprising, but then I didn't know what to do next, either as
someone who wanted the answer, or someone who wanted to provide it.

Duncan Murdoch

>
> Frank E Harrell Jr wrote:
>
>>I feel that as long as people continue to provide help on r-help wikis
>>will not be successful.  I think we need to move to a central wiki or
>>discussion board and to move away from e-mail.  People are extremely
>>helpful but e-mail seems to be to always be memory-less and messages get
>>too long without factorization of old text.  R-help is now too active
>>and too many new users are asking questions asked dozens of times for
>>e-mail to be effective.
>>
>>The wiki also needs to collect and organize example code, especially for
>>data manipulation.  I think that new users would profit immensely from a
>>compendium of examples.
>>
>>Just my .02 Euros
>>
>>Frank
>
>
> ______________________________________________
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> PLEASE do read the posting guide! http://www.R-project.org/posting-guide.html 

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Re: Wikis etc.

Jonathan Baron
On 01/07/06 10:51, John Sorkin wrote:
> The situation
> would be greatly helped if the mailing list would automatically add a header or
> footer to all Email messages giving the URL of the archived Email threads. Don't
> expect people to know that what are not told! Those people who, in their answers,
> suggest that people should search the archives should include the URL of the archives
> in their response (http://carn.us.r-project.org then click on the word SEARCH in the
> left-hand column ).

Or, more tersely, http://cran.r-project.org/search.html.

http://cran.us.r-project.org/search.html is a mirror, and there
are other mirrors.

Jon
--
Jonathan Baron, Professor of Psychology, University of Pennsylvania
Home page: http://www.sas.upenn.edu/~baron

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Re: Wikis etc.

John Sorkin
In reply to this post by Frank Harrell
Jon,
Thank you for the terse form of the URL. I hope the mailing list will automatically include it in there Email messages.
John

John Sorkin M.D., Ph.D.
Chief, Biostatistics and Informatics
Baltimore VA Medical Center GRECC and
University of Maryland School of Medicine Claude Pepper OAIC

University of Maryland School of Medicine
Division of Gerontology
Baltimore VA Medical Center
10 North Greene Street
GRECC (BT/18/GR)
Baltimore, MD 21201-1524

410-605-7119
- NOTE NEW EMAIL ADDRESS:
[hidden email]

>>> Jonathan Baron <[hidden email]> 01/07/06 11:00 AM >>>
On 01/07/06 10:51, John Sorkin wrote:
> The situation
> would be greatly helped if the mailing list would automatically add a header or
> footer to all Email messages giving the URL of the archived Email threads. Don't
> expect people to know that what are not told! Those people who, in their answers,
> suggest that people should search the archives should include the URL of the archives
> in their response (http://carn.us.r-project.org then click on the word SEARCH in the
> left-hand column ).

Or, more tersely, http://cran.r-project.org/search.html.

http://cran.us.r-project.org/search.html is a mirror, and there
are other mirrors.

Jon
--
Jonathan Baron, Professor of Psychology, University of Pennsylvania
Home page: http://www.sas.upenn.edu/~baron 

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Re: Wikis etc.

Uwe Ligges
In reply to this post by Jonathan Baron
Jonathan Baron wrote:

> On 01/07/06 10:51, John Sorkin wrote:
>
>>The situation
>>would be greatly helped if the mailing list would automatically add a header or
>>footer to all Email messages giving the URL of the archived Email threads. Don't
>>expect people to know that what are not told! Those people who, in their answers,
>>suggest that people should search the archives should include the URL of the archives
>>in their response (http://carn.us.r-project.org then click on the word SEARCH in the
>>left-hand column ).
>
>
> Or, more tersely, http://cran.r-project.org/search.html.


But then, everybody loads stuff from CRAN master and does not use an
appropriate mirror.
I'd like to suggest *not* to use any mirror URL explicitly in R-help
mails (always, not only related to this thread).
In this case, I'd propose to write something like "CRAN-mirror/search.html"

Uwe



> http://cran.us.r-project.org/search.html is a mirror, and there
> are other mirrors.
>
> Jon

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Re: Finding R mailing list archives {was "Wikis etc."}

Martin Maechler
In reply to this post by John Sorkin
>>>>> "John" == John Sorkin <[hidden email]>
>>>>>     on Sat, 07 Jan 2006 11:05:01 -0500 writes:

    John> Jon, Thank you for the terse form of the URL. I hope
    John> the mailing list will automatically include it in
    John> there Email messages.  John

well, it *already* contains

> [hidden email] mailing list
> https://stat.ethz.ch/mailman/listinfo/r-help 
> PLEASE do read the posting guide! http://www.R-project.org/posting-guide.html

where the first URL is **the** R-help page, and has itself links
to more than one archive of the mailing list,
and the 2nd URL (posting guide) also explains many things
(including the mailing list page and archives).

I really wonder if adding yet another URL to the footer of every
message will be the solution; as others have correctly remarked,
the problem is that for many newbies it is more convenient to ask
rather than to first read something that contains more than three
words. ;-)

Well, then, maybe for some people, an extra line with another link
("click click" instead of reading) might be the solution...

Martin Maechler, ETH Zurich, (your mailing list maintainer)

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