What's the deal with that "[ANN]" stuff in titles in Package announcements?

I guess it stands for (package) ANNouncement? Although, the first time I saw it I thought it referred to a lady named Ann…

What is the purpose of putting it in a thread’s title? I see that not all package announcement threads have it.

When I make my own packages, should I put [ANN] in the title of the announcement thread?

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Hey @nsajko - if you are new to the community, welcome! You are correct. The general trend is to put [ANN] into a post announcing a novel package created. There really isn’t a hard and fast rule about always having [ANN] when you announce a new package but it helps with discoverability. :slight_smile:


Isn’t that really redundant, though?
AFAICT, package announcements are supposed to be posted in the, well, package announcements category.
In addition, many posts are tagged with “package” and/or “announcement”.
On top of that, people then often prefix the title with [ANN], ANN: or [ANN]:.

Is discoverability here really that bad, or are posters that eager for exposure, that package announcements need to be marked as such in triplicate?
Wouldn’t it be sufficient to post in the correct category, with a title of “MyPackage version x.y.z”?


I agree that the various announcement markers are somewhat redundant but I like having them all anyway, since they’re low-cost and have different primary purposes:

  • the category/subforum is good for browsing
  • the tag is good for searching
  • [ANN] is a visual highlight that brings attention to announcements when you scan a list of mixed topics, e.g. in Latest. It makes me think “oooh shiny, what’s that?” and click the link because I like keeping up with the latest.

It’s rather useful convention. For example, I rarely go to special categories and prefer to read “latest” section and in latest tags or categories are not as visible as topic titles. New package release is a big deal for an author and future users, so there is nothing wrong with adding extra emphasize to such topic.


If one is on the Package announcements page, a search (from that page) will (by default) be restricted to Package announcements.

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People subscribe to receive notifications via email. Having [ANN] in the subject of the email makes it much easier to find out package announcements in your inbox.

I think I miss what’s the problem with this practice, besides being slightly redundant in some cases.


I’d say it’s potentially confusing because the meaning isn’t obvious from the abbreviation alone, and this could therefore add to a sense of being an outsider (“what other unwritten conventions am I unaware of?”). That said, I think this community’s insider/outsider split is so mild that this wouldn’t be a serious problem.

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I really like how it provides a visual cue, and I’m glad people do it.


Should ANN only used for packages or can it be used for any supposed useful code?

The way to make code useful is usually by putting it into a package.


It is a legacy of Julia’s forum previously being a mailing list on Google Groups.
Emails don’t have things like subcategories or tags.
So putting something like that in the subject makes it easy to filter.
And it mirrors the stuff mailing lists itself puts in so you would get an email that has subject line:
[JuliaLang][ANN] MyGreatPackage.jl.
It is basically fake tagging.

Old school people who remember those forums, or who have used other mailing lists kept up the habit.
And newer folks copied them.

It is redundant, but harmless.