[ESS] feature request: shell support

Rodney Sparapani rsparapa at mcw.edu
Thu Oct 10 16:26:43 CEST 2013

On 10/10/2013 02:15 AM, Rainer M Krug wrote:
>> >Otherwise, it wouldn't be difficult to add.
> Then I would suggest to add it. Another option would be (but I don't know
> if this is possible, and it seems to go along the lines of what you
> mention below) to add it to an additional package which is loaded
> on top of ESS and extends it.

Well then...  Although I am an ESS developer, this is only my
personal opinion.  I too find myself writing Bourne shell scripts
(for the last 20 years now ;o)  However, I feel that the emacs
community is well aware of the Bourne shell and its imitators.

IMHO the ESS developers want to fill the niche that
statisticians and statistical programmers/analysts find
in emacs.  There are a lot of things that would be nice to
have that we are not going to be able to add due to time,
warm bodies, climate change, etc.

 >> >
 >> >Some time ago we discussed about rewriting ESS from scratch. If such a
 >> >thing ever happens, the sub-process handling will be an independent
 >> >module that any scripting language can easily customize for it's own
 >> >needs.
 > That would be really brilliant.

When we get to that point (and I feel it is a ways off yet),
then we could re-consider.  Normally, at this point, I would
say glibly "patches welcome".  However, I don't think they
really are right now.  Whenever we accept a patch, then we
end up maintaining it (except in the rare exception when we
can convince the author to stick around).  So, I personally
am in no hurry; I would postpone this until the rewrite is
complete when we can consider what languages to add then.

I have my doubts whether the Bourne shell will be able to compete
for attention with julia, polymode, SLIME[R] and/or whatever new
fangled flavor of the month the kids come up with.  But that's
just the opinion of one eternal pessimist.

Rodney Sparapani, PhD
Manager of Statistical & Computational Operations
Center for Patient Care and Outcomes Research (PCOR)
Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW), Milwaukee, USA

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