Re: [Rd] R books: self-serving question

From: G. Jay Kerns <gkerns_at_ysu.edu>
Date: Wed, 29 Oct 2008 21:28:52 -0400

Dear Ben, Peter, et al:

On Wed, Oct 29, 2008 at 6:56 PM, Peter Dalgaard <p.dalgaard_at_biostat.ku.dk> wrote:
> Ben Bolker wrote:
>>
>> thought someone here might know:
>>
>> how would I go about nominating my book
>> (Ecological Models and Data in R, Princeton
>> University Press 2008) for inclusion
>> in the R books page ... ? I can supply
>> bibliographic data, blurb etc. ...
>>
>> cheers
>> Ben Bolker
>
> I think you just fill in a BibTeX entry like this one
>
> http://www.r-project.org/doc/bib/R-books_bib.html#R:Dalgaard:2008
>
> and send it off to ...er... well, I suppose anyone on the Core Team has
> write access, but some may be less liable to get it wrong than others. Most
> commits are by Kurt Hornik.
>
> --
> O__ ---- Peter Dalgaard Ă˜ster Farimagsgade 5, Entr.B
> c/ /'_ --- Dept. of Biostatistics PO Box 2099, 1014 Cph. K
> (*) \(*) -- University of Copenhagen Denmark Ph: (+45) 35327918
> ~~~~~~~~~~ - (p.dalgaard_at_biostat.ku.dk) FAX: (+45) 35327907
>

First: IMHO, there is nothing better than an *official* listing on the R-Project home page.

At the same time, I got it in my mind a few months back (while working on a Teaching Task View) that an additional good place for such listings would be the R-Wiki:

http://wiki.r-project.org/rwiki/doku.php?id=links:books

There, books could be loosely organized by subject, author, ... whatever. Further, people could directly link from their book listing to CRAN package(s) associated with the book. The wiki is set up to do this easily.

In this way, the responsibility for updates (new editions), listing in appropriate category, accuracy, etc would shift more to the author, and less to R-Core. (not that Kurt doesn't have enough to do.. :-)

The R-Wiki syntax is easy, but not instantly obvious. I quickly threw together some instructions on how to add books to the Wiki:

http://www.cc.ysu.edu/~gjkerns/addRbook.pdf

I went to the link that Peter suggested above and tweaked the BibTeX to R-Wiki-speak (they are not identical). This is how far I got:

http://www.cc.ysu.edu/~gjkerns/bibtexModified.txt

At that point, I got busy with writing papers, new semester, new baby on the way; time disappears. In addition, I had some questions about linking to commercial sites from the wiki, how to organize the subjects, and who does(n't) want their book listed - although my guess is that authors have a vested interest in their book being listed, and accurately.

Any suggestions? Good idea, bad idea? Full speed ahead or slam on the brakes?

Best,
Jay



G. Jay Kerns, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Mathematics & Statistics
Youngstown State University
Youngstown, OH 44555-0002 USA
Office: 1035 Cushwa Hall
Phone: (330) 941-3310 Office (voice mail) -3302 Department
-3170 FAX
E-mail: gkerns_at_ysu.edu
http://www.cc.ysu.edu/~gjkerns/

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