[BioC] Quantian with over 400 CRAN and BioConductor packages

Dirk Eddelbuettel edd at debian.org
Fri Aug 6 06:25:12 CEST 2004

[ Apologies for the cross-post, and I hope this is seen as sufficiently
  on-topic.  Anybody who feels otherwise, please drop me a line off-list. ]

Earlier this week I sent out the announcement below for the newest version
of Quantian. Quantian is a bootable dvd (based off Knoppix & clusterKnoppix)
with well over 1gb of scientific, numerical or quantitative software -- and
now contains almost all CRAN and BioConductor packages [1]. I would greatly
appreciate feedback, test reports, or suggestions. General questions are
more than welcome on the quantian-general at lists.alioth.debian.org list.

With best regards,  Dirk

[1] Generally speaking, packages like ROracle that require special header
files are excluded, as are a few Windows-specific packages. Package with
'free only for academic research' licenses are also excluded as Quantian is
being redistributed by a few dvd / cdrom re-sellers.

Executive Summary for a quick overview: 
  Quantian adds over 360 GNU R packages from the CRAN and
  BioConductor archives, the GNU geda electronics design software, an almost
  complete debian-med suite, the complete scalapack development suite,
  atlas3 and lam development packages, fancy GL screensavers, lots of
  recommended documentation packages as well as a general update of over 300
  Debian packages bringing the size of the iso to over 1.5gb corresponding
  to 4.4gb uncompressed.

Announcing Quantian release

I   What is it?

    Quantian is a remastering of Knoppix, the self-configuring and directly
    bootable cdrom/dvd that turns any pc or laptop into a full-featured Linux
    workstation, and clusterKnoppix, which adds support for openMosix. 
    However, Quantian differs from (cluster)Knoppix by adding a large set 
    of programs of interest to applied or theoretical workers in 
    quantitative or data-driven fields. 

    See http://dirk.eddelbuettel.com/quantian.html for more details.

II  What is new?

    o Third release based on Knoppix 3.4 with many changes from both new and
      updated packages, still based on Knoppix 3.4 and the clusterKnoppix
      release from May 10 with kernel 2.4.26 with the 'testing status'
      openMosix patch as well as a non-openMosix kernel 2.6.6;

    o New Quantian software includes
      - way more GNU R packages generated with a modified version of a script
        by Albrecht Gebhardt -- about 360 packaged are added from CRAN
	and BioConductor provided unparalled depth for statistical computing
      - an almost complete debian-med of everything but the cms package
        (would Zope make sense for Quantian -- comments welcome!)
      - the GNU geda program suite for electronics design 
      - the scalapack suite for parallel linear algebra (pvm, lam and mpich)
      - lots of recommended documentation packages have been added 
      - header packages for atlas3 and lam are now included
      - plus lots of fancy GL screensavers;

    o Upgraded throughout against Debian testing with over 300 fresh packages;

    o Total size is now over 1.5gb for the compressed iso image,
      corresponding to more than 4.4gb of uncompressed software;

    o A new cdrom size version of, and a small 7gb bootable cdrom
      iso provided by Marco Caliari are available too;

    o New download site http://quantian.alioth.debian.org is up and running;
      note that the main site at U of Washington will be replaced in the
      near future -- stay tuned!
    o Mailing lists for Quantian up and running

      Following the release, a Quantian project was opened on
      alioth.debian.org.  So far the only use of the alioth infrastructure
      has been the creation of two mailing lists

        quantian-announce	  for announcements, intended to be low volume
        quantian-general	  for general discussions about Quantian

      Please go to     


      for subscription info etc., and start using the quantian-general lists
      for general questions, comments, suggestions or discussions about 

      Quantian-general is subscribed to quantian-announce, so you only need
      to subscribe to one (but can of course subscribe to both).

      I also set the Reply-To: for this message to
      quantian-general at lists.alioth.debian.org   so that discussions can be
      continued on the list.

    o See http://dirk.eddelbuettel.com/quantian/changelog.html for details.

III Where do I get it?

    Downloads are available from the two main hosts both of which also
    provide rsync:

    o U of Washington:  
      - http://www.analytics.washington.edu/downloads/quantian
      - rsync://www.analytics.washington.edu::quantian

    o European mirrors, bittorrent site and cdrom vendors will hopefully
      catch up over the next few days. See 

      for download info.

IV  Known Bugs

    o None right now -- so please test away! 

V   Other items

    o Mailing lists have been created, see above.

    o Feedback / poll on package additions or removal

      As always, I welcome comments and suggestions about programs to be
      added or removed. Existing Debian packages get pushed to the front of
      the line.

      Please send feedback, questions, comments, ... to the 
	quantian-general at lists.alioth.debian.org

      list to maximise the number of eyes glancing at any one question.

Those are my principles, and if you don't like them... well, I have others.
                                                -- Groucho Marx

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