A Makefile for knitr documents

One of the best things I’ve found about using R for all my scientific work is powerful and easy to use facilities for generating dynamic reports, particularly using the knitr package. The seamless integration of text, code, and the resulting figures (or tables) is a major step toward fully-reproducible research, and I’ve even found that it’s a great way of doing “exploratory” work that allows me to keep my own notes and code contained in the same document.

Being a fan of a “Makefile” approach to working with R scripts, as well as an Emacs/ESS addict, I find the easiest way to automatically run/compile my knitr latex documents is with a Makefile. Below is a template I adapted from here:

all: pdf

MAINFILE  := **PUT MAIN FILENAME HERE**
RNWFILES  := 
RFILES    := 
TEXFILES  := 
CACHEDIR  := cache
FIGUREDIR := figures
LATEXMK_FLAGS := 
##### Explicit Dependencies #####
################################################################################
RNWTEX = $(RNWFILES:.Rnw=.tex)
ROUTFILES = $(RFILES:.R=.Rout)
RDAFILES= $(RFILES:.R=.rda)
MAINTEX = $(MAINFILE:=.tex)
MAINPDF = $(MAINFILE:=.pdf)
ALLTEX = $(MAINTEX) $(RNWTEX) $(TEXFILES)

# Dependencies
$(RNWTEX): $(RDAFILES)
$(MAINTEX): $(RNWTEX) $(TEXFILES)
$(MAINPDF): $(MAINTEX) $(ALLTEX) 

.PHONY: pdf tex clean 

pdf: $(MAINPDF)

tex: $(RDAFILES) $(ALLTEX) 

%.tex:%.Rnw
	Rscript \
	  -e "library(knitr)" \
	  -e "knitr::opts_chunk[['set']](fig.path='$(FIGUREDIR)/$*-')" \
	  -e "knitr::opts_chunk[['set']](cache.path='$(CACHEDIR)/$*-')" \
	  -e "knitr::knit('$<','$@')"

%.R:%.Rnw
	Rscript -e "Sweave('$^', driver=Rtangle())"

%.Rout:%.R
	R CMD BATCH "$^" "$@"

%.pdf: %.tex 
	latexmk -pdf $<

clean:
	-latexmk -c -quiet $(MAINFILE).tex
	-rm -f $(MAINTEX) $(RNWTEX)
	-rm -rf $(FIGUREDIR)
	-rm *tikzDictionary
	-rm $(MAINPDF)
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