Hi Allin (and everyone).
Sorry for being a bit of a lurker and replying a month late, but I just
had a thought. What about a session at the Eastern Economic Association
conference (or any other conference) about "Open Source Approaches in
Economics Teaching and Research" or something along those lines?
I'm planning to attend anyway to present a paper (assuming it gets
accepted); I also have my own separate interest in a discussion on open
source teaching, since I've written an autograded homework system
) that I'd like to present some time at
some place, and I'm also writing an intermediate micro book under the
Open Publication License (see http://myweb.liu.edu/~tbarr/eco61
results so far).
Another idea is that if we conduct such a session, it would also give
some of us a chance to meet face-to-face at the conference and also to
unofficially discuss GRETL-related stuff.
If anyone here is thinking about attending anyway, then organizing this
would be easy. I know it doesn't satisfy the need for "a Gretl
conference," but maybe it would provide us a stepping stone toward one?
And if it's successful at generating interest, it could also be repeated
at other conferences without much difficulty.
On Mon, 2007-09-03 at 20:09 -0400, Allin Cottrell wrote:
I know, everyone in the academic world is busy: there are classes
to teach, papers to be written, papers to be refereed, conferences
to attend, and so on.
I'm subject to all these pressures myself, and I spend just about
all of my "spare time" coding gretl. The result is that I'm not
able to devote time to various things that, I think, would help us
all ("us" being people who think gretl is of value). Here are
three things that I think would be helpful, one of which has
already been done, and two of which remain to be done. If you
feel you could contribute in any of these ways, please do!
1) Writing articles, or putting up websites, that explicate gretl
for people who haven't heard of it. This has been done. For
example, Tadeusz Kufel has a website that brings gretl to a Polish
constituency; Talha Yalta, Ryan J. Smith and J. Wilson Mixon Jr.
have published papers that assess gretl; and Lee Adkins has an
excellent online guide to econometrics using gretl.
2) A Free/Open-Source Software award for gretl: Why haven't we won
a prize yet? The obvious answer is that gretl is a relatively
specialized piece of software; it's not something that _most_
desktop users will have a need for, or _most_ sysadmins.
But if someone had a a little spare time for research: Who awards
such things and how are the nominations assessed? I'm not the one
to say this, but it seems to me that -- leaving aside the famous
"LAMP stack" of Linux (kernel), Apache (web server), MySQL
(database) and PHP (web scripting language) -- gretl is one of the
best conceived and most functional open-source projects in
existence. Of course, this is not just thanks to me and Jack
Lucchetti -- it's also due to the careful bug reports and detailed
suggestions submitted by many of you over the years.
So, what about it? A little recognition in the open-source
community at large would be morale-booster for everyone working on
3) A gretl conference? We have people with more than a casual
interest in gretl in at least half-a-dozen (6) countries. Is
there anyone who might be interested in organizing a conference to
bring us all together? My thought is that such an event would not
simply bring _us_ together, but might also form a focal point that
would bring in other _potentially_ interested people. For
example, graduate students with computing expertise! The
conference agenda could be broader than gretl: it could be, for
example, something like "open-source approaches in statistical
Tavis Barr <tavis.barr(a)liu.edu>