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st: RE: open source
Well, I doubt that StataCorp would want
to make claims that just aren't true,
or that could be seen as seriously misleading.
The executable, and the underlying
C code, of Stata are emphatically not open
source, and they are likely to remain
proprietary for the foreseeable future,
and the unforeseeable future too.
It is of course correct that user-written
ado files are in a fairly strong sense
open source, although fairly useless
without the executable. Also, StataCorp-written ado
files are in a very weak sense also open source,
but only because they are visible.
If someone were to write a new open source
executable that ran Stata programs, then there would
be an interesting situation! I know this
was done once in the case of S-Plus and R,
but my own guess is that this is unlikely
to be repeated.
R is a wonderful thing, no doubt about
it, but the differences are every bit as
important as the similarities.
> -----Original Message-----
> From: firstname.lastname@example.org
> [mailto:email@example.com]On Behalf Of David Airey
> Sent: 06 September 2004 14:44
> To: firstname.lastname@example.org
> Subject: st: open source
> I was at a talk given by a Stata user the other week, and he
> the open source stance of Stata to an audience member, since that
> audience member is the new chair of biostatistics, and he's an ardent
> fan of R. I'm not sure the audience member blinked at all.
> R gets a lot of attention from potential users by being on the open
> source bandwagon. Why does the Stata Web site not include
> this phrase,
> "open source", prominently, or make the comparison with what Stata is
> and is not in terms of open source more explicit? I did not do an
> exhaustive search. In many ways, much of Stata is open source, or
> provides the same utility/flexibility.
> For the record, I try to learn both Stata and R. I don't know other
> packages, and I barely have enough time for a little more than a
> superficial grasp of either.
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