Re: [Rd] Task views

From: Duncan Murdoch <murdoch.duncan_at_gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 12 Feb 2012 18:56:10 -0500

On 12-02-12 5:43 AM, Barry Rowlingson wrote:
> On Sat, Feb 11, 2012 at 5:55 PM, Patrick Burns<pburns@pburns.seanet.com> wrote:
>
>> Now it could be that people are not trying
>> very hard to solve their own problems, but
>> to be fair it is a pretty gruelling process
>> to find the Task Views.
>>
>> May I suggest that there be a "Task Views" item
>> on the left sidebar of the R website in the
>> Documentation section?
>>
>
> I'd go further, and suggest that the list of Task Views appears on
> the home page of www.r-project.org under the heading "Look at all
> these things you can do with R". (Maybe to replace the 8 year old
> clustering graphic (or maybe someone could do something in ggplot2
> that looks nice n shiny?) )
>
> "Task Views" (stupid name, who's idea was that?) are an absolute GEM
> and shouldn't be slotted between 'What's New?' and "Search" on CRAN
> mirror sites. The CRAN Task Views page doesn't even say what "Task
> Views" are. Here's some text that might help:
>
> "Task Views are short documents outlining the functionality of R in a
> given field or methodology. Since most of R's power comes from add-on
> packages downloaded from CRAN, Task Views tend to concentrate on
> summarising the packages that are relevant. If you ever find yourself
> thinking 'how do I do X in R?' then the list of Task Views should be
> your first stop."

One difficulty we have is the ancient HTML used on both www and CRAN. The main www site is not mirrored, but CRAN is. A link to CRAN.r-project.org always goes to the main site, and there's some reluctance to advertise that: it kind of defeats the load balancing that the mirrors are intended to do.

I'm sure the R community has hundreds of members who could provide the code to link from the www page to a geographically appropriate CRAN mirror. Would someone care to offer it?

Duncan Murdoch



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