[Rd] [SoC09-Idea] Development of crantastic.org

From: hadley wickham <h.wickham_at_gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 23 Feb 2009 14:44:33 -0600

Hi all,

Here's my idea for the google summer of code - it's a resubmission from last year. We had a couple of interested students, but their proposals weren't quite competitive enough to get funding.



Summary: Create an information portal for the fast growing list of R packages, integrating package documentation and journal publications with feedback from the useR community.

Required skills: Familiarity with Ruby and R, and web development in general (html, css, js, ...). knowledge of RSS/Atom could be useful.

Description: The CRAN archives contain over 1300 source packages of very high-quality, and BioConductor has another 200+. For many data analytic tasks there is more than one package offering a solution, often using different names for similar functionality, because different research communities may use different vocabulary for similar methods (e.g., statistics vs. machine learning jargon). Hence it is often hard for users to find the packages they really need. CRAN task views offer some help, but are edited by designated maintainers and hence cannot cover all fields and aspects.

crantastic.org implements a first step in complementing this with package reviews from the useR community, but it still lacks many features we would like to have: integration with task views, vignettes, and journal publications; match authors and users based on email address; list top users and authors on respective pages; implement a rating system; event streams for packages and users; integration with CRANberries RSS feed, etc.

If you're interested in this project take a look at the current code, available at https://github.com/hadley/crantastic/tree, and include a couple of concrete suggestions as to how you would improve the current code, and how you plan to implement the additional features.


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