new package (in development): ropencan

After seeing an issue on ropensci/wishlist (Fisheries and Oceans Canda - Open Data Portal · Issue #27 · ropensci-archive/wishlist · GitHub), I decided to get started on a package that would broadly interact with the Open Government of Canada Open Data Portal.

I have taken a few steps toward a first version of the package here:

That is so far just to see how much work would be needed. In the meantime I have been searching to make sure if something like does not already exists and could not find anything. Does the idea seem worth pursuing to anyone else? If yes, I would be most happy to continue onward

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rOpenSci Community Manager here. @VLucet It’s great that you followed up on this wishlist idea. I’ll defer to @sckott or others to comment on your specific package questions. (As a :canada:, I think it’s :tada:)

I think I could get something started, although getting the package up to the standards of ropensci is beyond my dev skills at the moment.

We have a book rOpenSci Packages: Development, Maintenance, and Peer Review that might be helpful and this discussion forum is the ideal place to ask questions to leverage our community’s experience.

Regarding the name of the package, I think “ropencan” is too close to “ropensci”. It carries unintended implications and we discourage that. Would you consider renaming it? Please see 1.1.1 Naming your package in Chapter 1 Packaging Guide | rOpenSci Packages: Development, Maintenance, and Peer Review

Looking forward to seeing how this develops!

Hi @stefanie, thank you so much for your comments. I have been reading the development guide. It is documented so well I am sure I will be able to bring it up to the standards with some extra work.

It is a very good point about the naming and I wrongly assumed it actually was a good name! Maybe “rgovcan” would be better suited in that regard.

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Im realising that @sckott ckanr package is actually all one might need to interact with the open portal API. rgovcan would probably only be a wrapper around that, with facilitated access to some important datasets. Is is worth developing?

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Yes, ckanr is a general purpose R client for the CKAN API that all CKAN instances have.

So you could use wrap ckanr for your package. It would be a good test for ckanr, and may highlight some things that could be improved with it.


I like this idea! Would the first step be to add to the list of supported servers?
EDIT: It is already there, I did not see it the first time I checked.

that step isn’t completely necessary b/c you can use any CKAN instance base url with ckanr

Right, I only realised that later, thanks for the pointer!