[R] Rd files with unknown encoding?

Prof Brian Ripley ripley at stats.ox.ac.uk
Mon Dec 17 11:08:57 CET 2007

Here's a slightly cleaner version:

showNonASCII <- function(x)
     ind <- is.na(iconv(x, "latin1", "ASCII"))
     xxx <- iconv(x[ind], "latin1", "ASCII", sub="byte")
     if(any(ind)) cat(which(ind), ": ", xxx, "\n", sep="")

used as

> showNonASCII(readLines("foo.Rd"))

On Sat, 15 Dec 2007, Spencer Graves wrote:

> Dear Prof. Ripley:
>     Thanks very much.  I did as you suggested, which I'll outline here to 
> make it easier for anyone else who might have a similar problem:
>          * Read the offending *.Rd file in R using 'readLines'
>          * Applied 'iconv' to the character vector, following the last 
> example in the help file.  This translated all offending characters into a 
> multi-character sequence starting with '<'.
>          * Used 'regexpr' to find all occurrences of '<'.
>     The latter identified other uses of '<' but produced a sufficiently 
> short list that I was able to find the problems fairly easily.
>     Thanks again.
>     Spencer Graves   p.s.  And in the future, I will refer 'Rd' questions to 
> 'R-devel', per your suggestion. 
> Prof Brian Ripley wrote:
>> On Wed, 12 Dec 2007, Spencer Graves wrote:
>>>      How can I identify the problem generating a warning in R CMD check
>>> for "Rd files with unknown encoding"?
>>>      Google identified an email from John Fox with a reply from Brian
>>> Ripley about this last 12 Jun 2007.
>> But not on this list:
>> https://stat.ethz.ch/pipermail/r-devel/2007-June/046055.html
>> R-devel would have been more appropriate for this too.
>>>  This suggests that I may have accidentally entered some possibly 
>>> non-printing character into the offending Rd file.  The message tells me 
>>> which file, but I don't know which lines in the file.  Is there some way 
>>> of finding the offending character(s) without laboriously running R CMD 
>>> check after deleting different portions of the file until I isolate the 
>>> problem?
>> I did say so in that thread:
>> https://stat.ethz.ch/pipermail/r-devel/2007-June/046061.html
>> You can do much the same in R via iconv("", "C", sub="byte"), provided you 
>> can read the file in (it may not be representable in your current locale, 
>> but you could run R in a Latin-1 locale, if your OS has one).

Brian D. Ripley,                  ripley at stats.ox.ac.uk
Professor of Applied Statistics,  http://www.stats.ox.ac.uk/~ripley/
University of Oxford,             Tel:  +44 1865 272861 (self)
1 South Parks Road,                     +44 1865 272866 (PA)
Oxford OX1 3TG, UK                Fax:  +44 1865 272595

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