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MathGroup Archive 2007

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Re: Automated documentation (like javadoc) for packages?

  • To: mathgroup at
  • Subject: [mg81240] Re: Automated documentation (like javadoc) for packages?
  • From: Szabolcs Horvát <szhorvat at>
  • Date: Mon, 17 Sep 2007 03:35:04 -0400 (EDT)
  • References: <fcio8g$4o$>

Kentaroh Takagaki wrote:
> Hello,
> I have a Mathematica package for graphing specialized data, and I plan to
> share this code with others. I am wondering if there is any way to
> automatically generate documentation for the package (similar to javadoc for
> Java), which will parse the .m files for symbol::usage statements,
> Options[symbol] statements, scope, etc.

This would probably not be as useful for Mathematica as for C++, Java, 
etc. because Mathematica already provides easy ways to read usage messages:

When I come across package with scarce external documentation, I load 
the package

<< PackageName`

and then ask for all the symbol names in the package with

? PackageName`*

This gives a list of clickable names.

> Even a rudimentary script would be of great help, and just .nb or html
> output is fine. (It doesn't have to use the Help Browser or new
> Documentation Center). Please let me know if anybody has or knows of a way.

You could start by getting the names of all public symbols with 
Names["PackageName`*"].  Note that this evaluates to a list of Strings 
that need to be converted to symbols using Symbol before e.g. 
#::"usage"& or Options can be applied.  After that you'll just need some 
formatting functions to create a pretty notebook document from this list.


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