[R] Question: write an R script with help information available to the user

Jeff Newmiller jdnewmil at dcn.davis.CA.us
Sun Feb 3 06:39:19 CET 2013

The normal expectations of an R user is that useful functions you want to share are in packages, which include help files. There is no way to both avoid the package development process and offer help to the user within R. Read the Writing R Extensions document for the most up-to-date information about this process. RStudio has some nice enhancements for making this process a little quicker, but not so much that you can escape reading the documentation I just mentioned. I happen to like using roxygen2 for building help files, but this just means reading even more documentation.

If you are determined to use the source function instead of building a package, then you cannot take advantage of the users' familiarity with the help system. However, you could just put your instructions in comments in your R file and hope they will look there.
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Sent from my phone. Please excuse my brevity.

Chee Chen <chen418 at purdue.edu> wrote:

>Dear All,
>I would like to ask a question on how to incorporate into an R script
>help information for the user. I vaguely recall that I saw some
>instructions on an R manual, but am not able to figure them out.
>Hereunder is the basic setting:
>1.  I finished writing an R script, my_script.r, that is a function
>(the function is named "my_func") for a statistical procedure. This
>means that the user only needs to:
>source("directory_of_script\my_script.r"), then run, my_func(arg1,
>arg2, ..), to execute the procedure.
>2. I would like to add some lines into "my_script.r", so that a user
>can get information on this file and function by using "?my_func"
>Any help or suggestion is appreciated.
>Best regards,
>	[[alternative HTML version deleted]]
>R-help at r-project.org mailing list
>PLEASE do read the posting guide
>and provide commented, minimal, self-contained, reproducible code.

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