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Scilab Help >> Documentation system > help_from_sci


Generate help files and demo files from the head comments section of a .sci source file.


help_from_sci() // generate an empty function template
helptxt = help_from_sci() // generate an empty function template
help_from_sci(funname,helpdir) // generate helpdir/funname.xml from funname.sci.
help_from_sci(dirname,helpdir) // process dirname/*.sci and create helpdir/*.xml help files.
help_from_sci(dirname,helpdir,demodir) // as above but also creating demodir/*.dem.sce demo files.
[helptxt,demotxt]=help_from_sci(funname) // return funname.xml and funname.dem.sce code as two text matrices.



the name of a single .sci source file to be processed.


directory name where all .sci files will be processed.


optional path where the .xml help file will be created.


optional path where .dem.sce demo files will be created based on code from the Examples section.


returns the XML help code if helpdir is empty, or the path to the .xml file.


returns the demo code if demodir is empty, or the path to the .dem.sce file.


The help_from_sci function generates .xml help files based on the head comments section of .sci source files. Optionally .dem.sce demo files can be generated based on code from the Examples section in the head comments section of .sci files.

In order for help_from_sci to format the .xml file properly the head comments section should comply with some simple formatting rules.

The first comment line following the function definition should contain a short description of the function.

The remaining comments are formatted according to the following (optional) headlines: "Syntax", "Parameters", "Description", "Examples", "See also", "Used functions", "Authors" and "Bibliography".

The following guidelines should be used when writing the source code comments:

  • Syntax - one example pr. line.

  • Parameters - separate parameter name and description by a ":". Keep the description of each parameter on the same line.

  • Description - formatting of the text can be done using XML commands. Compare the output of head_comments("help_from_sci") with help("help_from_sci") to get some hints. Adding an empty comment line in the Description section is interpreted as the start of a new paragraph.

  • See also - list one function name pr line.

  • Authors - write one author on each line following the Authors headline. Use ";" to separate the authors name from any add additional information.

  • Bibliography - write one reference pr line following the References headline.

The "&" character as well as numerical HTML entities like "{" are supported in the contents. Literal HTML entities like "´" are not accepted. Please use directly the UTF-8 character like "é" instead.


// Open an source code template in the scinotes editor and return its help and demo texts
[helptxt, demotxt] = help_from_sci()

// From a toolbox root directory a typical syntax would be:
// help_from_sci("macros","help\en_US","demos")
// This command would process all .sci files in the macros directory
// and use the head comments section to update all .xml help files in the
// help\en_US directory an rebuild the .dem.sce files in the demos\ directory.


6.0.1 Numerical HTML entities like ω are now accepted in heading comments.
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Last updated:
Mon Feb 12 19:26:59 CET 2018