[Rd] How to link to vignette from .Rd file

Duncan Murdoch murdoch at stats.uwo.ca
Tue Nov 7 15:12:30 CET 2006

On 11/7/2006 8:51 AM, Agner Fog wrote:
> I am building a package for various noncentral hypergeometric distributions.
> I want to include some heavy mathematical formulas. It appears that the 
> build and INSTALL commands produce only .chm files and not .pdf files 
> from my .Rd files under Windows. This means that it cannot show 
> complicated mathematical formulas.
> The solution might be to include a .pdf file as a vignette. I tried 
> that, but I can't find any way to link to the .pdf file or access it 
> from any of the help facilities. The .pdf file is useless if the user 
> can't find it.

Yes, that's a major problem in the current R help system.  You can give 
the user code that would work to show the vignette, but there's no way 
to create a live link to it.

There are a lot of problems with the help system, and vague plans to fix 
them, but there are a lot of meta-problems as well:  there is no 
agreement on whether it should it be a complete rewrite or an 
incremental fix, no agreement on exactly what the goals of the system 
should be (e.g. should help("foo") try to guess what the user meant when 
the exact topic "foo" was not found), there's more energy spent on 
criticizing proposed changes than on implementing anything at all, and 
there's nobody who has the time and energy to fight against all of this 
to actually do anything about it.

Duncan Murdoch

> I have placed the .pdf file under inst\doc\ together with an index.html 
> file.
> I have tried to link to the .pdf file from an .Rd file with 
> \link{packagename/doc/xxx.pdf}

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