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Re: Experimental Mathematica debugger

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  • Subject: [mg96928] Re: Experimental Mathematica debugger
  • From: dh <dh at>
  • Date: Fri, 27 Feb 2009 06:14:56 -0500 (EST)
  • References: <go63dv$pkc$>

Hi David,

another great addition from you, thank's a lot.

There is a samll bug with the conditional break point window. It is not 

possible to input any text because it does not take the focus. I have 

Mathematica version 7 on Vista.

thank's again, Daniel

David Bailey wrote:

> I have been fairly dissatisfied with the built-in debugger available in

> versions 6 and 7, and I would like people to try an experimental new

> debugger called DebugTrace. As some of you may recall, I once wrote a

> debugger for an earlier version of Mathematica - called M-Debug. That

> debugger was based on TraceScan, and was unable to locate Mathematica

> expressions within the original source code. It was also very slow when

> code was executing to a breakpoint.


> DebugTrace works in a new way, identifying program locations using line

> numbers which double as breakpoint toggle buttons!


> I work as a consultant, and in my experience, projects often start with

> a very large notebook, full of unstructured code, which it is necessary 

> to understand. Beginners typically write programs in this style - often

> without a single user-defined function - and DebugTrace can operate well

> on this kind of code, as well as more elegant code and also packages.


> DebugTrace is a Mathematica program like any other - i.e. it operates

> without any kernel hacks, but this means that it is fairly easy to add 

> support for particular pieces of software. For example the debugger 

> knows about my Super Widget Package, and when appropriate, it displays 

> an extra button that enables the debugger to gain control while a modal 

> Java window is being displayed (without closing the window). I imagine 

> that this flexibility may be useful in other contexts.


> Another revolutionary feature of DebugTrace, is that it comes with 

> actual documentation, illustrated with a small example program!


> DebugTrace version 0.95 is available free from my website. It will

> remain free even after it is polished. If you find specific problems, it

> might be best to e-mail me directly with a simple example.


> As I say, this project is experimental, and its future development - if

> any - depends on the feedback I receive.



> David Bailey




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