R package authors: may I interview you?

Hi All,

I am looking for authors, maintainers, or contributors to R packages who would be willing to let me interview you about your experience with maintaining packages and interacting with users of your package. I’m a postdoc in the Institute for Software Research at Carnegie Mellon University, and we’re doing a research study about how scientific communities coordinate to maintain shared software.

The interview would be 30-40 minutes, at a time and medium that’s convenient for you. I would be asking about how you get a sense of the usage and impact of your package(s), and what use you make of that information. I’ll also ask you for some feedback about the usefulness and correctness of whatever data we’ve collected about your package, via a tool we have for monitoring usage and mapping connections among R packages.

If you’re interested, either message me directly on this site, or go try out our tool ( http://scisoft-net-map.isri.cmu.edu ) and fill out the survey (the link appears in the left column after you’ve visited enough pages); the survey has an optional blank for your contact information.


1 Like


Very interesting work over at http://scisoft-net-map.isri.cmu.edu/. Time
for an interview might be dodgy but can you send me a link to your survey?
(apparently I didn’t browse enough pages for the link to appear on your
site :wink:

Have you tried reaching out to sys admins that might be interested in
installing your monitoring suite? While the anonymization feature is great
& necessary, from a sys-admin perspective I might imagine an admin wanting
to get the profile of use patterns for just the machines they administer,
rather than the only the total aggregate data. Is that possible? It might
be an incentive to increase opt-in rates.

Sure, the link is:

Thanks! The survey’s useful even if you don’t have time for an interview.


PS. Interesting idea about the sysadmins. I’ll look into that.

Probably it’s obvious, but I have no idea what to write in that input field on the first page (below “Yes” and “No”).

Oops, my mistake. I’ve just removed the extra input field.

hi @cbogart At least for me, when I don’t have an internet connection, and i have the scimapclient lines in my .Rprofile file, it hangs and R won’t start up. Seems like this should be fixed?

Hi @sckott, eeek, yes, that definitely should be fixed. I can’t reproduce this on my mac though. Can you tell me your setup: R version, scimapClient version, platform, and contents of your .Rprofile? It shouldn’t even touch its internet code until you exit R; all I can think is that maybe some other odd condition is making it try to send a packet early.

@cbogart hmm, it happened on a plane, with their wifi, so i imagine it had something to do with that. I just tried turning off my wifi, and it was fine with the wifi off. that’s probably an edge case…

Aha, @sckott, I can half-reproduce that: if I connect to a restricted wifi node that forces me to a login page, my R session hangs on exit rather than just failing. Still not sure why you’re failing on start though. I’ll keep digging.

That sounds closer to what I experienced. It was a while ago, so what you’re describing may be what happened

Hi Chris! Just seeing this thread. Happy to be interviewed if you still need folks.

hey @cbogart , paging you to make sure you see this