[Rd] finding vignettes for new users...

Prof Brian D Ripley ripley@stats.ox.ac.uk
Tue, 30 Apr 2002 07:28:21 +0100 (BST)

On 29 Apr 2002, A.J. Rossini wrote:

> >>>>> "kurt" == Kurt Hornik <hornik@ci.tuwien.ac.at> writes:
> >>>>> A J Rossini writes:
>     >> What would be the best way to point new users to the PDF vignette
>     >> file?   (it would be just jolly if library(vignette=packagename) fired
>     >> up acrobat reader :-).
>     kurt> The current procedure is that
>     kurt> 	help(package = "FOO")
>     kurt> 	library(help = "FOO")
>     kurt> points you to the vignettes in package FOO (provided that there are
>     kurt> some).  How to actually view them is something we need to carefully
>     kurt> consider: e.g., an alternative would be to integrate viewing pdf into
>     kurt> our current HTML help system.  I am not saying that this is a good idea
>     kurt> though as I think we want to move to something that can render HTML and
>     kurt> be controlled from R.
> I'm more fond of the Unix way -- schlep the docs off to an appropriate
> viewer.  (acroread, gv, or xpdf for Unix -- not sure what is
> appropriate for Windows or Macs).

`the Unix way'?   That is the one OS I know that does not come with
integrated support for doing that.  Under Windows (and I believe MacOS) you
just ask the OS to show the file, and it uses a central repository of
methods (which the user can tune) to choose how to do so.  (In R you call
shell.exec().)  Most versions ask the user what to do if no method is

> However, I'm being slow as usual -- of course most HTML browsers
> "support" PDF viewers (as plugins or otherwise).
> I can at least code that for local or restricted use.  Thanks, Kurt...

Brian D. Ripley,                  ripley@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 272860 (secr)
Oxford OX1 3TG, UK                Fax:  +44 1865 272595

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