Re: [Rd] if(--as-cran)?

From: Spencer Graves <>
Date: Mon, 03 Sep 2012 21:58:59 -0700

On 9/3/2012 7:59 PM, Hadley Wickham wrote:
>> | Hi, see thread "[Rd] Proposal: Mechanism for controlling the amount of
>> | testing 'R CMD check' performs" on April 8, 2012:
>> |
>> |
>> Good proposal, somehow I missed that at the time. Something like this ought
>> be to implemented in R proper.
>> In Rcpp, I am now using a similar environment-variable-based approach, and it
>> doesn't scale particularly well if every (large) package does its own thing.
> Is there any approach that's going to be particularly better than
> scaling out CRAN's build servers? As a particularly profuse package
> author, I'd be happy to pay for the computing time that it takes to
> run a full set of tests on my package (and this seems feasible in the
> era of on-demand cloud computing).
> Hadley

       Jim Ramsay suggested we have CRAN generate a pro-forma invoice when a package is first submitted to CRAN and on each anniversary thereafter that would be like page charges for journals: If you work for an organization that knows how to pay invoices, you submit the invoice to that system. Ramsay said he has grant money and would be happy to pay a reasonable fee, but he needs an invoice. If you aren't in such an organization, you are free to plead poverty and pay anything or nothing. I think we should do the same for R-Forge.

       I think the fee should be set high enough that the money generated would be enough to pay for more hardware AND for someone to maintain the system. The entirety of humanity will benefit if Ripley, Hornik, Ligges, Theussl, Zeileis and others spend more time developing better statistical algorithms and less struggling with computer hardware and operating systems just to keep CRAN and R-Forge functioning. These folks and others have done a great job in bringing R to where it is today. There are now over 4,000 packages on CRAN. If 25% of those pay, say, 200 (Euros or dollars) per year, for example, that should be enough to hire a competent sys admin or two with an adequate hardware budget to keep it all running, I think.

       Thanks, Hadley.

Spencer Graves, PE, PhD
President and Chief Technology Officer
Structure Inspection and Monitoring, Inc.
751 Emerson Ct.
San Josť, CA 95126
ph:  408-655-4567

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