[ESS] Release of ESS 5.3.5

Martin Maechler maechler at stat.math.ethz.ch
Wed Aug 22 09:21:07 CEST 2007

>>>>> "PL" == Phillip Lord <phillip.lord at newcastle.ac.uk>
>>>>>     on Tue, 21 Aug 2007 16:40:30 +0100 writes:

>>>>> "SE" == Stephen Eglen <S.J.Eglen at damtp.cam.ac.uk> writes:
    >>> we are proud to announce the release of version 5.3.5 of ESS;
    --> http://ESS.r-project.org/downloads/ess/
    >>> Apart from documentation updates and patches, there are several new
    >>> features, notably
    >>> 1) 'M-x R-newest',
    >>> which will start the newest version of R that it can find on your system.
    >>> And that should also automagically work on Windoze ...

    SE> For those of you now running ESS 5.3.5, I would be grateful to hear
    SE> whehter M-x R-newest works for you, especially on Windows.

    SE> The long term plan is to use R-newest functionality to work when M-x R
    SE> fails to find a version of R to start (i.e. inferior-R-program-name is
    SE> not set correctly).

    PL> Stephen

    PL> It fails for me. The problem comes from here....

>>     (defun ess-r-version-date (rver)
>>      "Return the date of the version of R named RVER.1
>>     The date is returned as a date string.  If the version of R could
>>     not be found from the output of the RVER program, \"-1\" is
>>     returned."
>>       (let (ver-string
>> 	    (date "-1"))
>> 	(setq ver-string (shell-command-to-string
>> 			  (concat rver " --version")))

    PL> As I use bash, this always returns....

    PL> bash: c:/Program: No such file or directory\n

aha! You *are* using Windoze

    PL> and it all goes wrong from there. 

    PL> Would checking c:/Program Files/R/ for directories not work reasonably? 

No, as we just heard on ESS-help,
R may well be installed in a different place.

    PL> If

    PL>    c:/Program Files/R/R-x.x.x/bin/R.exe

    PL> exists then you can snarf the version from the R-x.x.x
    PL> without messing around with processes. 

Yes, but what if things are in  d:/R/  instead -- a very
reasonable choice?

    PL> Of course, some
    PL> pathological maniac might change the numbers so the
    PL> versions don't match but, hey, they are pathological
    PL> maniacs.

    PL> BTW, just install ESS yesterday. Found a three other
    PL> minor issues:

You didn't tell us your OS (but we now know it's Windows),
nor version of Emacs (or even Xemacs ??).

    PL> First: 

>> (defvar ess-lisp-directory
>>     (if (and (boundp 'load-file-name) load-file-name)
>> 	;; A nice default
>> 	(directory-file-name (file-name-directory
>> 			      (file-truename load-file-name)))
>>       (defun find-load-file-directory nil
>> 	"Locate directory in which load-file sits."
>> 	(interactive)
>> 	(let ((load-file-directory)
>> 	      (beg (point)))
>> 	  (list-command-history)
>> 	  (set-buffer "*Command History*")
>> 	  (goto-char (point-min))
>> 	  (search-forward "(load-file ")
>> 	  (goto-char (1+ (match-end 0)))
>> 	  (setq beg (point))
>> 	  (end-of-line)(search-backward "/")
>> 	  (goto-char (match-end 0))
>> 	  (setq load-file-directory
>> 		(expand-file-name (buffer-substring beg (point))))
>> 	  (kill-buffer "*Command History*")
>> 	  load-file-directory))
>>       (directory-file-name (find-load-file-directory)))
>>     "Directory containing ess-site.el and other ESS files.")

    PL> Crashes for me with search-failed. Would

    PL> (file-name-directory (locate-library "ess-site.el"))

    PL> than the command history? 

Good idea !
[if it works -- which is not easy to test for me,
 because for me, the first clause
	 (and (boundp 'load-file-name) load-file-name)
 always triggers i.e. the  find-load-file-directory
 function never needs to be called

Your proposal should be amended, however, to

	(file-name-directory (locate-library "ess-site"))

since it can be *.el or *.elc {byte-compiled version}

Looking at the above  (defun  find-load-file-directory ....)
I must say that it looks very kludgey to me
also since it relies on an explicit (load-file ...) call which is not at
all the only way ess-site may have been loaded.

--> I'm trying your suggestion
    and send you (privately) a changed ess-site.el that you can
    try, ok?

    PL> Second: 

    PL> Had some weird issues with plot windows hanging -- at first I thought this was
    PL> bad, but they seem to be recovering now, so I guess this is not a problem.

Once we know more about your setup (OS version, Emacs version, R
version ...) people may have hints for you.

    PL> Third: 

    PL> Reading through the R tutorial, I have realised that I know almost know
    PL> statistics. Suggestions welcome....

The book by Peter Dalgaard, 
or another one from

Martin Maechler, 
ETH Zurich

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