deep breaths and count to 10 (was Re: [R] Several R vs S-Plus issues)

Thomas Lumley tlumley at
Wed Oct 3 19:49:43 CEST 2001

Some information that might be useful to readers of these lists

> Peter Dalgaard <p.dalgaard at> wrote:
On Wed, 3 Oct 2001, David Brahm wrote:
> > PLEASE do not post several bugs in one report ...
> > PLEASE discern between actual bugs and points for discussion...
> Not mentioned in the FAQ (section 9.2), nor anywhere else on CRAN that I can
> find.  It sounds like r-bugs is some kind of automated system that cannot
> handle non-standard formatting, is that it?  I assumed it was just read by a
> human (the "bugs guy"), parsed, and handed out appropriately, sorry.

R-bugs is an automated bugs repository. It's designed to make sure that
each bug is filed away separately and that we can check off which ones
have been fixed when the next release comes along.  It exists because we
found that bugs not fixed immediately often got forgotten. It also
assigns bug numbers that ensure all correspondence relevant to a
particular bug is filed together.

This means that multiple bugs in one report are a bit of a pain. They end
up filed in one place, so it's harder to check which bits of the report
are fixed.  It's particularly distracting when the same report contains
things that we intend to fix, things that we can't fix, things that are
already fixed and things that we don't want to fix.

It's not the end of the world, but it is a lot less effective than one
message per bug.

> > PLEASE do not mail to multiple addresses. All bug reports are echoed
> > to the r-devel list and should be discussed there.
> Then I don't understand how to communicate with the "development team", besides
> just posting to the general discussion list.  Is every posting there really
> read and handled by the right people?

Two points: Yes, we really do read r-devel, so it's the right place for
feature requests and miscellaneous complaints that aren't bugs, just

Also, all email sent to r-bugs is automatically forwarded to r-devel.
Similarly r-announce is forwarded to r-devel and r-help. This means that
you should almost never send the same message to more than one R address.

R-devel is in fact the main place where R-bugs is read.  Various people go
over the repository from time to time, to make sure that there aren't
lurking problems, but most bugs get discussed and fixed
more-or-less immediately.


Thomas Lumley			Asst. Professor, Biostatistics
tlumley at	University of Washington, Seattle

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